The aim is not merely to cover relevant standards and technologies as a purely academic exercise (although a significant part of the book is dedicated to these), but to augment these by explanations about why certain standards decisions have been made and how various NG-RAN architecture options can be deployed in real networks.
With 5G deployments coming up, there is a desire to re-think the RAN architecture to ensure 5G networks can deliver the promised throughput and low latency KPIs in a sustainable fashion. Furthermore, there is a desire (at least from some companies) to change the proprietary nature of the RAN. Correspondingly, the NG-RAN architecture evolution is driven not only by technical challenges, but also various business considerations, which are explained in the book.
Besides the basic NG-RAN architecture defined in Release-15, the book describes how the RAN has evolved in Release-16 with the addition of wireless relaying (also referred to as Integrated Access and Backhaul [IAB]) and satellite access support (also referred to as Non-terrestrial Networks [NTN]) and how the RAN is likely to evolve in Release-17 and beyond.