The reality of business today is that it is possible and plausible for virtually any sized organisation, within any sector or trade, to acquire and leverage off wireless communication channels.
According to specialist service providers within the telecommunications infrastructure and solution development space across Africa, satellite connectivity is gaining popularity and standing out as a credible, cost-effective solution.
Locally there are partnerships in place that are designed to transfer the value of point-to-multipoint satellite access service to clients. As an example, Q-KON, a South Africa-based engineering group focused on providing turn-key solutions and managed network services to the emerging African telecommunications market, has united with its ICT services partner Business Connexion in order to benefit a client, Metcash.
This is a joint operational agreement between Q-KON and Business Connexion that involves the provision of managed network services, and the construction of a teleport operated by Q-KON to ensure the delivery of value via Business Connexion’s VSAT technology and support.
Metcash required a reliable solution to ensure connectivity for its management information systems. The company had to address the issue of running a network to remotely located branches. Aside from the challenge of inadequate infrastructure, the problem of cable theft also hampered progress.
The solution was found in the deployment of Business Connexion’s VSAT network, to reduce the effect of business disruption due to access line failures.
The co-operation and partnership between Q-KON and Business Connexion enabled Metcash to benefit from reliable inter-branch connectivity across proven platforms incorporating technology that has the capacity to transmit and receive signals with minimal interference.
Referring to this example, Q-KON management is confident of the inherent value to the market housed in its satellite access service under the umbrella of que-X.
This is based on a two-way communication circuit from an on-premise earth station at the customer’s site to its teleport or hub facility in Midrand.
Que-X is a satellite network solution that provides seamless end-to-end IP connectivity from any location in Africa directly to the teleport.
Dawie de Wet, CEO at Q-KON, says it is a concept and service that the company’s growing list of service partners are keen to invest in and exploit, in order to strengthen connectivity service delivery to their clients.
“Interconnection from the remote site to the teleport is via either Hellas-Sat 2 on Ku-Band, or via Arabsat 5A on C-Band satellites. From the teleport the access circuit is connected to the customer’s hosted equipment in the tier four data centre or backhauled to the customer’s SA premises via terrestrial links,” explains De Wet.
According to De Wet, satellite-based services is growing in appeal domestically and across Africa.
“Connectivity services like ADSL is very strong but is based on existing copper cable lines and is asymmetrical by nature. It was designed as a voice network and can be restrictive and prone to issues like cable theft and indiscriminate breakages in connection. Satellite has the advantage of being able to reach remote areas and cover extensive ground, and was designed to facilitate Internet connectivity,” he says.
“Access to connectivity services is a priority across the continent, and the market is hungry for coalition that adds value, provides reliability and is established to deliver quickly and accurately.”