Africa’s first 400G optical transponder deployed


NEC XON General Manager for networking, Anthony Laing

JOHANNESBURG, (CAJ News) – THE deployment of Africa’s first 400G optical transponder solution marks a significant milestone for the telecommunications industry in the continent.

400G is next-generation optical networking technology that can transfer data at speeds of up to 400 gigabits per second on a one optical wavelength.

MTN Group and NEC XON have announced the deployment of Phoenix, which officials believe has the potential to revolutionise the way optical networks are built and operated, thereby transforming internet delivery across the continent.

The Phoenix solution is also hailed as a significant step forward in the telecom industry, with the potential to revolutionise networking and connectivity across Africa and beyond.

By leading the way in adopting this innovative technology, MTN believes it sets a remarkable example for other telecom operators to follow, ultimately benefiting customers with improved, cost-effective connectivity.

Phoenix is part of the Telecom Infra Project’s (TIP) Open Optical and Packet Transport (OOPT) project group, a collaborative effort involving multiple telecom operators and technology providers.

“Disaggregation is the future of networking, and we are proud to be at the forefront of this evolution,” said Anthony Laing, General Manager of Networking at NEC XON.

“This technology is a game-changer. It drives down costs, enhances innovation, and allows our customers to make independent hardware and software choices, which is a significant advantage in today’s competitive telecom landscape.”

To earn the Silver Badge, the Phoenix solution underwent rigorous testing, with network operators MTN and NTT Communications (NTT-Com) contributing to the execution and report submission.

Officials said the field testing was conducted within MTN’s production network in South Africa, demonstrating the technology’s viability in an inter-datacenter network scenario.

“We are thrilled to receive the Silver Badge recognition from TIP, acknowledging our commitment to promoting open and disaggregated solutions with the Phoenix optical transponder,” said Sou Satou, Senior Director of the Network Solutions Business Division at NEC Corporation.

“Our dedication to TIP and the development of open products in the optical transport market remains a top priority for NEC,” she added.

The companies involved in the deployment of Phoenix are designed to accelerate internet connectivity and optimise network operations, thereby democratising access to information.

It aims to make affordable internet more widely available across Africa, fulfilling a critical societal need.

“The deployment of Phoenix with NEC technologies is a significant step toward fulfilling a crucial promise to our customers, to deliver accessible, reliable and fast internet,” said Amith Maharaj, Executive for Network Design and Planning at MTN Group.

Phoenix is described as a white box transponder that operators can seamlessly deploy on their existing optical line systems to enhance network capacity.

– CAJ News

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