Safaricom upgrades 500km backbone to 400G technology

01 March 2019 | Alan Burkitt-Gray

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Kenya’s Safaricom is to upgrade its 100Gbps fibre backbone to 400Gbps, to cater for the increasing amount of video being transmitted over the network.

Safaricom, a subsidiary of Vodacom which is ultimately part of the Vodafone group, says it has experienced in just two years a fourfold growth in average data usage from 160MB to 640MB per customer per month.

“The 400G solution will support the continued growth of our network which is being driven by an explosion in internet usage,” said CTO Thibaud Rerolle.

“Mobile data usage on our network has been doubling year-on-year while our fibre network now reaches more than 220,000 homes and 17,000 businesses across more than ten towns. It was therefore prudent to invest in the latest network technology to ensure that we can support the demand from our customers for years to come.”

The upgraded network, which is 500km long, will be supplied by Huawei. Safaricom has also laid more than 5,500km of fibre linking its mobile masts in more than 16 major towns.