Teraco and NAPAfrica introduce free national peering points, aiming to reduce local bandwidth costs in South Africa
Teraco Data Environments (Teraco) has announced that NAPAfrica – the first open and public peering facility with a national presence for network operators and ISPs – is now live, and free, running from its Cape Town, Johannesburg and Durban data centres.
Peering is the process where Internet Service Providers (ISP) exchange traffic. NAPAfrica operates an exchange, which is the physical infrastructure through which the ISPs peer.
Lex van Wyk, Managing Director, Teraco Data Environments, said that a free peering point is a strategic imperative in South Africa where internet usage is on the increase and will continue to do so with the adoption of cloud services and declining connectivity costs.
“Decreasing the absolute cost of internet transit is one of the principal drivers for pursuing an internet peering strategy and is very necessary in South Africa,” said van Wyk.
With the NAPAfrica exchange points located within Teraco data centres neutrality is guaranteed, and according to Van Wyk this neutrality is a critical feature of Internet exchange facilities worldwide.
“The introduction of route servers by NAPAfrica into the South African market will reduce ISPs operational costs by simplifying the peering process, giving easy access to high speed, low-latency connections,” van Wyk added.
Andrew Owens, Head of IT at Teraco, said that the management overhead of maintaining connections to a typical IXP model increases exponentially as the exchange grows. NAPAfrica is different, said Owens, thanks to its multi-lateral peering model which allows peers to connect once and grow with the exchange.
“Route servers lower the barrier to entry for operators that do not necessarily have the resources or hardware to manage multiple connections to numerous peers,” said Owens.
Van Wyk is also buoyant about Teraco’s role in establishing the first Durban internet exchange. “With the NAPAfrica exchange point now in Durban, Teraco brings the benefits of public peering directly to KwaZulu Natal.”