SEACOM boosts African Internet with submarine network upgrade

Privately owned service provider SEACOM has selected the 6500 Packet-Optical Platform and OneControl Unified Management System from Ciena Corp. (NASDAQ: CIEN) for the upgrade of its submarine fiber-optic cable network across the Southern and Eastern African coastlines. This falls in line with SEACOM’s focus on driving the development of the African internet and opening the broadband tap for African consumers.

Privately owned service provider SEACOM has selected the 6500 Packet-Optical Platform and OneControl Unified Management System from Ciena Corp. (NASDAQ: CIEN) for the upgrade of its submarine fiber-optic cable network across the Southern and Eastern African coastlines. This falls in line with SEACOM’s focus on driving the development of the African Internet and opening the broadband tap for African consumers.

Ciena says its technology will allow SEACOM to meet the growing capacity requirements of its customers and enable affordable Internet access to East Africa with a fiber-optic network that offers a better cost point and a smoother evolution path for the future.

The upgrade includes key countries in SEACOM’s 17,000-km undersea fiber cable network, including India, Egypt, Dijbouti, Kenya, Tanzania, Mozambique, and South Africa. The deployment will initially use Ciena’s 40G coherent transmission technologies, with ultra-long distance 100G wavelengths planned for future upgrades.

“Connectivity services in Africa are booming due to the growing needs of business IT users, the rise of cloud-based services, and growing requirements for the processing and storing of personal data,” said Claes Segelberg, chief technology officer at SEACOM. “Ciena’s technology will enable us to cost-effectively scale our capacity to address this growing demand for connectivity throughout the continent. The company’s future-proof network design has mitigated the risks associated with the upgrade project, ensuring a seamless transition for SEACOM’s carrier customers and end users.”

Ed McCormack, vice-president and general manager, submarine systems at Ciena, adds, “In the last couple of years, bandwidth penetration in several African countries has increased tenfold with the support of SEACOM’s submarine network. Ciena’s coherent technology will enable SEACOM to evolve and grow its network cost-effectively. It will lay the foundations for a unified terrestrial and submarine network and evolution path to a ‘GeoMesh’ network architecture.”

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