Optic cable arrival stirs ICT sector

The arrival of the Teams fibre optic marine cables in Mombasa at the Fort Jesus sea front. Companies are now expected to launch new products for mass market. Photo/FILE

Arrival of the submarine fibre optic cable has sparked off the release of new products and consolidation as the information communication and technology sector gears up for the mass market.

Last year telecom analysts predicted an upsurge in ICT products fuelled by the mass market rollout of residential internet this year. This is becoming evident with ongoing developments.

In his maiden speech, Mr Mickael Ghossein, the new Telkom Kenya CEO promised that the company would place focus on data service provision.

Strong areas

“In the next three to four years, we are looking at being a leader in the areas where we are strong and that includes broad band services,” said Mr Ghossein last week.

Internet service providers have already started selling broadband. UUNET Kenya says it will connect its clients onto the submarine fibre optic cable from September this year.

Mr Tom Omariba UUNET Kenya MD said on Monday that he has issued an internal communication to clients, advising them to utilise the current 60-day testing period to ensure their communication systems are protected against threats.

Two weeks ago, data infrastructure firm Kenya Data Network signed a Sh1.6 billion deal with telecom solutions provider Alcatel-Lucent for the upgrade of its internet network.

The three-year deal will include the supply, installation and integration of the internet protocol system in 12 towns countrywide.

The firm that has 10 gigabytes of data in the Seacom cable has started to invite orders for Seacom fibre optic.

The cable, through KDN costs $600 per MB (duplex) per month, which is a reduction from the current $4,000. 

Listed mobile phone operator Safaricom recently entered into an agreement in which Jamii Telecommunications Ltd will provide it with broadband infrastructure.

“As you know, Safaricom has now formally migrated to the Communication Commission of Kenya’s new technology-neutral, unified licensing regime and can therefore effectively offer a broader spectrum of data services using any technological platform available to it,” said Safaricom chief executive officer Michael Joseph.

The operator also launched a mobile internet portal. This is a service that will enable subscribers get fast access to both local and international content on their mobile phones.


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