SEACOM, Africa’s telecommunications and managed services provider, announced it had gone live on the Equiano subsea cable following the cable’s landing in Cape Town, South Africa, in August 2022.
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SEACOM offers Private Line services with latency speeds of ±110ms between South Africa and Europe, making it the fastest direct route between the continents.
SEACOM services via the cable will be available from March 16.
This comes after SEACOM fulfilled the necessary equipment and installation requirements with the help of its technology partner, Infinera.
The cable now forms part of SEACOM’s subsea cable ecosystem surrounding Africa, which is supported by a continent-wide IP-MPLS network.
Initially announced in 2019 by Google, the Equiano subsea cable is one of the highest-capacity cables serving Africa.
The cable stretches 15,000 kilometres from Portugal to South Africa, boasts twelve fibre pairs, and has a design capacity of 144 Tbps.
In addition to its landing station in Melkbosstrand, Cape Town, the cable also has landing stations in Africa, in Rupert’s Bay, St. Helena; Lomé, Togo; Lagos, Nigeria; and Swakopmund, Namibia. From these stations, branching units will extend connectivity to other African countries.
The launch comes after SEACOM has completed extensive work to support the new connection, including upgrades to its transmission and IP network both locally and internationally.
As part of the service available to wholesale and enterprise clients from March, SEACOM will offer an express route from Cape Town to Lisbon. This means clients will enjoy high-speed connectivity without having their data rerouted to other countries during transmission.
In addition to impacting connectivity in the countries in which it lands, such as faster Internet speeds and an improved user experience, the Equiano subsea cable is also expected to have a major economic impact in these countries.
According to a Regional Economic Impact Assessment by Africa Practice commissioned by Google and published in 2021, the cable will increase South Africa’s GDP by $5.8 billion and create 180,000 indirect jobs by 2025. ■