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Reliance Jio to build two subsea cables

Written by Tue 18 May 2021

Together new submarine system will provide over 200 TBpS of capacity across 16,000 km

Reliance Jio, Indian telecoms provider, has announced that it will construct two new submarine cables originating in Mumbai. The first, known as the India-Asia Express (IAX) will run east from Mumbai and terminate in Singapore. Another will run west from Mumbai and terminate in Savona, Italy; and will be referred to as the India-Europe Express (IEX).

This project represents the first time that India has been placed at the centre of a large-scale submarine cable system. Reliance Jio attributed their investment in the project as a means to meet the growing demands for streaming video, remote workforce access, and IoT applications, as well as the pending introduction of 5G networks to India.

Jio expects that the IAX will be completed in 2023, and will include stops in Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Malaysia before ending in Singapore.

The IEX will be completed in 2024, with stops in Oman, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Greece before ending in Italy. Together, the new submarine system will provide over 200 TBpS of capacity across 16,000 km. Technologies that will be applied will include wavelength-switched RoADM branching and open system technology.

In addition to building a communications network joining India with Asia, Northern Africa and Europe, the submarine cable will also connect to Jio’s existing fibre network. This will improve communications on Jio’s networks to the east and west coasts of the United States as well.

India is still in the throes of the COVID-19 pandemic, with cases rising to record-setting levels daily. However, this has created both challenges and pressure to invest in change for telecom companies like Reliance Jio.

Mathew Oommen, President of Reliance Jio, noted that the pressures of the global pandemic have increased the challenges associated with large-scale initiatives, but at the same time, have increased the need to upgrade services for customers.

He said, “Implementing these critical initiatives in the shadow of a global pandemic is a challenge, but the ongoing pandemic has only accelerated the digital transformation and the necessity of high-performance global connectivity for the delivery of a richer experience to enterprises and consumers.”

With remote work expected to continue in India, and all of the societal changes wrought by work from home, quarantine, and stay at home orders, demand for access to reliable, high-speed networks will likely continue to rise. Reliance Jio is looking to make investments now to help meet increased demand in the future for both businesses and individual consumers.

Written by Tue 18 May 2021


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