First, it's a meaningful effort to create a more direct and high-speed connection between the African continent and the US, home to many of the major data centers that fulfill data information requests over the global public Internet.
If Angola Cables can develop a stable and cost-effective high-speed, 300Gbit/s data traffic connection between Africa and a major US landing point -- in this case, between Luanda, Angola and Miami, Florida, via Brazil -- it can only help to boost the reliability and speed of data services for Africa's enterprise and residential users and help advance the continent's digital development.
The new link between Angola and the US via Brazil.
Second, the project includes the trial of some cutting-edge optical technology in the form of Nokia's Photonic Service Engine 3 (PSE-3) chipset, which in this instance is at the heart of the technology equipment vendor's 1830 Photonic Service Interconnect (PSI) data center interconnect (DCI) system that is being used to provision wavelengths.
That component is cutting edge because it includes a modulation technique known as probabilistic constellation shaping (PCS), which automatically shapes signals (based on pre-defined policies) to best suit the characteristics of the installed fiber, resulting in optical wavelengths that have less interference and impairments and so enable significant increases in the potential capacity of the fiber. If used effectively, PCS can push the capacity of optical data transport connections close to their theoretical limit, so boosting the efficiency of a network. (See Nokia Pushes Optical to the Limit.)
Nokia has been pushing its PCS developments hard for a couple of years, having made a big splash with its PSE-3 chipset at the annual OFC conference in the US in March 2018. Since then, though, market traction hasn't lived up to expectations, with activity seemingly limited to field trials and tests with the likes of Etisalat in the UAE, Italy's TIM (Telecom Italia), and smaller European operators such as Germany's M-net and Poland's Netia.
The trial with Angola Cables is another useful PSE-3 reference for Nokia, but a full commercial deployment, rather than just another trial, wold be good for the vendor and also provide greater assurance and stability for the network operators looking to bed technology such as PCS into their networks for the long haul (excuse the corny optical networking joke).
— Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-Chief, Light Reading for Connecting Africa.
This year did not begin the way most people expected it to, so what does the future of the telecoms sector look like in Africa in 2020? In this Connecting Africa online event, local analysts and industry stakeholders will discuss what African operators’ priorities for the year should be and the most significant market trends expected to dominate in 2020.
Will MNOs focus on sweating their current assets rather than investing in new technologies like 5G?
What impact will COVID-19 have on the continent’s networks?
What are the hot market trends in Africa when it comes to voice, data and mobile financial services?
The majority of 5G in Africa is still in the testing stage. However, as operators prepare their networks for the technology jump, what strategies are they deploying to ensure they gain the full value that 5G can offer Africa? This digital symposium will give you an insight into the opportunities and challenges facing Africa’s 5G rollout, with some country specific case studies unpacked.
How 5G-ready is African enterprise?
Is 5G a priority for in Africa, should it be? Or can operators and businesses focus on growing their 3G and 4G networks for enterprise instead?
What are the most significant enterprise business applications for 5G deployment on the continent, and where can 5G facilitate IoT applications?
Africa was the birthplace of Mobile Money and while it continues to rise in popularity, the industry is quickly evolving and launching more mobile-based financial services every day. In this Connecting Africa online event, local analysts and industry stakeholders will discuss how telcos are disrupting the financial services space and what the rise of Mobile Money 2.0 will look like for Africa.
From cash to mobile: heading towards a cashless society
Expanding MFS offerings beyond mobile money transfers
MNOs vs banks vs fintechs: an evolving competitive landscape
Unconnected and unbanked: fintech to improve financial inclusion
The rise of micro-loans and insurance through mobile platforms
Africa has the fastest growing population in the world and also the youngest, with 60% of Africans under the age of 25. It is clear that the next billion connected are going to be the mobile-only generation. This digital symposium will bring industry experts together to discuss Africa’s digital divide and how to get devices into the hands of young Africans and empower them to join the digital revolution.
Who’s Driving? The role of government & regulator, private tech companies, and public-private partnerships
Device affordability: are we reaching a tipping point?
Status check: Satellite vs Fiber and the enduring infrastructure gap
Exploring the wider societal and economic benefits of a connected, digitally literate continent