So 2009 appears to be going down in the books as the Year of the Cable in Sub-Saharan Africa what with all the cable lighting up in East Africa and now the Glo-1 landing in Lagos over the weekend which will provide additional bandwidth to West African countries. Friends in Ghana were excitedly talking about this when I was there last month as it will open up a second route out of the country above and beyond the single line that they currently have which is tied in to the old SAT-3 line.
Throughput is going to start out at 640 Gbs and eventually be cranked up to 2.5 Tbs. There’s been a bit of coverage on it which you can read at 27 Months, TechMasai, Vanguard, ITNewsAfrica, and This Day. I’m probably missing a lot of others as cable landings are a pretty big deal and this one is made even more so as it’s being deployed primarily by Globacom Limited who are a Nigerian company.
The only thing that should probably be mentioned in all of this is that from Ghana to Senegal, the cable leapfrogs six countries (yes, I am indeed counting The Gambia in there). I’m not sure if this is because these other countries didn’t want in on the connection (which colleagues in Côte d’Ivoire tell me is often the case) or if the countries were simply left out. It’s a shame about this as a lot of Information Ministers are going to hobble their countries in the future if they don’t have enough connectivity coming in. They’ll have to run connections to neighboring countries who do have it and then pay a premium for something they should have had directly in the first place. So it goes apparently, but bandwidth is decidedly becoming a hard currency around the world and countries need to get in on it when they can.
The Glo-1 Lands