With the completion of the West Africa Cable System (WACS), operational from 11 May 2012, Neotel retains its unique position as the only local telecommunications operator connected to each of South Africa’s established submarine cable systems.
Neotel has built a strong fibre capability in South Africa linked to existing submarine cables. As a member of the WACS consortium, Neotel’s network is now even more robust, in line with the company’s stated strategy of investing in a high capacity national optical fibre backbone infrastructure.
Angus Hay, General Manager for Strategic Business Development at Neotel says, “For Neotel, this means that our customers are highly unlikely to experience downtime since we have the flexibility to move traffic from one cable to another in the event of any cable failure.”
The addition of WACS to Neotel’s international connectivity dramatically increases the availability of reliable high capacity bandwidth to Western Europe and the Americas, by far the highest traffic route for the country. It also means that Neotel will be able to optimise its international costs by carrying traffic on cost-effective routes.
While WACS has a design capacity of 5 Terabytes per second (TBps), of which about 500 Gigabytes per second (GBps) will be lit initially, this will also enable future expansion of Neotel’s bandwidth.
“We are committed to enabling business in South Africa through efficient and cost-effective telecommunications. We see ourselves as a catalyst for their global expansion plans, increasing their productivity and improving their own competiveness,” Hay adds.
Each of the cables that land in South Africa connects Neotel into the Tata Communications global submarine cable network. This provides Neotel direct access to Tata Communications’ global infrastructure which makes up 1/5th of the world’s internet routes and includes 24/7 access to the world’s first round-the-world fibre optic cable network, bringing increased capacity, resilience and enhanced communications links from South Africa to the rest of the world.
Being part of the Tata Communications global network also provides access to high bandwidth capacity services as well as broadcast media products, such as VideoConnect which enables Neotel to deliver live broadcasts for broadcasters and other media providers, reliably, via fibre rather than satellite.