Range Networks Unveils APIs for OpenBTS at OSCON

 The Launch of OpenBTS 5.0 Provides Developers with Greater Access to
Real-Time Network Information

PORTLAND, Ore., July 22, 2014 (OSCON, Oregon Convention Center, Booth #P3) Range Networks, the leading provider of commercial open source cellular systems and leader of the OpenBTS software project, today announced the early public release of OpenBTS 5.0. New features include the first of several planned APIs. It is available to the OpenBTS community immediately as a free download.

The latest generation of OpenBTS provides developers with greater access to real-time network information, opening the door to new network applications and services by leveraging OpenBTS’s layered, IP-based architecture. The release also adds significant improvements in system performance achieved through a major rewrite of the Layer 2 architecture, furthering the migration of multiprotocol radio access network (RAN) infrastructure to low cost, standard hardware using open source software.


  • Framework for APIs – Live events from within OpenBTS can now be published to 3rd party clients. The NodeManager API framework has been extended to support event publishing, facilitating the implementation of these and future APIs. These events are JavaScript Object Notation (JSON) formatted objects, making them easy to consume in a wide variety of programming languages.
  • Physical Channel API – Publishes live physical radio information about all handsets connected to the network including:
    • Unique identifier for each handset (IMSI)
    • Approximate distance of the handset
    • Handset transmit power level
    • Network signal receive strength and quality
    • Signal information from all neighboring cells as seen by the handset
  • Meta information about the network is also included – Handsets receive strength and quality as seen by the network, what absolute radio-frequency channel number (ARFCN) the handset is connected to, which timeslot the handset is utilizing as well as what type of action the handset is currently performing.
  • Field-tested in search and rescue application – A practical application of such physical status information is the innovative helicopter search and rescue application developed by Icelandic-based Rögg Corporation and in use by the Icelandic coast guard. The application uses timing information from the physical channel to calculate distance and map the location of lost persons in the Icelandic highlands.


Baldvin Hansson, director of technology, Rögg Corporation said:

“The API framework is an excellent development for OpenBTS. It facilitates access to real-time network information for third-party applications such as ours and is a unique capability. The information makes our life-saving helicopter search solution possible, enabling the Coast Guard to locate lost individuals faster and more efficiently.”

Edward Kozel, CEO of Range Networks, said:

“By providing open source hardware and software, we can create an environment for rapid innovation from an entire new set of players in the marketplace to produce better products at lower prices. The release of OpenBTS 5.0, with the addition to the API framework and the improvements in Layer 2, is a significant milestone in our development efforts in terms of stability, reliability and scalability. This represents a major leap forward in terms of expanding the reach of non-traditional mobile networks.”

Social Media Destinations:

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/range-networks

Twitter: https://twitter.com/RangeNetworks

OpenBTS Community: http://openbts.org/