Kenya-based Jamii Telecom is launching a GPON (Gigabit-capable Passive Optical Network) network that will deliver Fibre-To-The-Home for the first time in Sub-Saharan African. It plans to roll-out VoIP, Internet, video and security applications as part of the new initiative.
This will give the Kenyan market two players at the high-bandwidth end of the market: Jamii Telecom and Wananchi.
Jamii Telecom has steadily built itself a set of fibre metronets and connecting pieces of national backbone. So why Fibre-To-The-Home (FTTH)?
According to General Manager John Kamau, “We asked ourselves what is the next big application? We can’t go for more spectrum (to deliver wirelessly). The mobile operators already have an edge there. So we thought a GPON network enabling FTTH would draw new excitement.”
The network will be able to deliver 2.4 Gbps downstream and 1.25 Gbps upstream. The residential or SME (Small and Medium Enterprises) customer will get a CPE (Customer Point Equipment) that has 5-6 ports, delivering video content, VoIP, Internet, and a Wi-Fi hot-spot (just for your own house or flat):
“It will enable the user to have massive bandwidth of over 100 mbps. It will deliver Video On Demand and be able to power 3-4 TVs, offering HD delivery. It will offer things like plug-and-play VoIP, video conferencing and security cameras. The network can provide an ecosystem for IPTV and this presents a considerably opportunity. Also you can do things like remote teleworking,” said Kamau.
Many of these services and applications are things that WiMAX simply cannot support.