Global Internet firm to set up hub in E. Africa

A European Internet infrastructure provider is planning to set up a network hub in East Africa in a move that may increase browsing speeds while lowering costs.

In a press statement published on its website on Monday, the Amsterdam Internet Exchange Point (AMS-IX) said that it was in talks with the Telecommunication Service Providers Association of Kenya (TESPOK) to establish a local internet exchange presence.

An Internet Exchange Point (IXP) is a platform that allows Internet Service Providers (ISPs) as well as content providers to connect and exchange traffic.

AMS-IX is one of the largest content providers in the world.

Currently, local ISPs seeking to access traffic from other global networks have to go through IXPs in Europe and in Asia.

However, the establishment of the local hub would localise regional content, thus cutting down on transit costs that ISPs pay to access exchange points in Europe.

It would also reduce lag time in accessing Internet content.

“To have a good interconnection and Internet performance in the region, the setup of an Internet exchange hub is essential,” said AMS-IX boss, Mr Job Witteman.

According to research commissioned by the Internet Society and published earlier this year, Kenyan ISPs are already making savings by exchanging local traffic through the Kenya Internet Exchange Point (KIXP) instead of routing it internationally.

The establishment of an AMS-IX presence in the region could increase these savings further.

Meanwhile, undersea cable operator SEACOM has become a reseller of Internet capacity under a new deal signed on Monday.

Previously, local ISPs seeking to connect with other ISPs through Amsterdam had to purchase transit from third parties.

Seacom will now be able to sell the service directly to ISPs in Kenya.





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