CASE STUDY1AVIAT NETWORKS FEBRUARY 2012
LEADING KENYA OPERATOR MIGRATES FROMTDM TO HYBRID MICROWAVE, EYES ALL IP
HYBRID RADIOHYBRID RADIOHYBRID RADIOHYBRID RADIO OFFERS ETHERNET FOROFFERS ETHERNET FOROFFERS ETHERNET FOROFFERS ETHERNET FOR DATA, E1S FOR VOICEDATA, E1S FOR VOICEDATA, E1S FOR VOICEDATA, E1S FOR VOICE
Safaricom is the long-time mobile leader in Kenya and still growing. Subscribers were up 9percent in 2011 to 17.2 million. Moreover, 3G customers increased over 85 percent to 4.9million. These 3G subscribers are exploding data traffic. Also, WiMAX subscribers areincreasing 4G data traffic at an exponential rate. Those caused problems as data trafficwas outstripping legacy backhaul capacity. Plus, voice traffic capacity had to be protected.“There was a drastic increase in uptake of 3G/WiMAX data services. This was straining thetraditional TDM transmission systems due to inefficiency of the Ethernet-to–E1 convertersthat enabled Ethernet to be transported over E1s,” says Jared Onyimbo, Safaricom’sPrincipal Transmission Planning Engineer. “A hybrid platform that transports Ethernet andTDM traffic natively was the perfect solution to these conversion inefficiencies.“
MODULAR ECLIPSE GIVEMODULAR ECLIPSE GIVEMODULAR ECLIPSE GIVEMODULAR ECLIPSE GIVES FLEXIBS FLEXIBS FLEXIBS FLEXIBLE ETHERNET CAPACITYLE ETHERNET CAPACITYLE ETHERNET CAPACITYLE ETHERNET CAPACITY
With Aviat Networks’ ProVision network monitoring software, Portal element manager andEclipse Packet Node Gigabit Ethernet switching, engineers were able to provision sufficient
Safaricom, the leading mobile operator in Kenya, East Africa, has been inbusiness since 2000. Then owned by the Kenya government, it started as ananalog mobile phone network. It’s now a fully independent, publicly tradedmobile operator. Over time as it transitioned technologies, it accumulatedlegacy TDM equipment. But with growing 3G HSDPA and WiMAX businesses,Safaricom had to enable more Ethernet capacity for 3G and WiMAX data whileleveraging its TDM base for 2G/3G voice. It needed a hybrid microwave backhaulto extend its TDM investment and allow it flexibility for Ethernet data expansion.
“Our strategy is tocontinually invest in allareas of our network anddeliver on our customerneeds. Democratizing dataand the mobile Internet tobridge the Digital Dividehas delivered stronggrowth. The investment indata services—principally3G, fiber, WiMAX andmicrowave—saw thenumber of mobile datacustomers increase byover 85 percent to 4.9million in 2011.”
As incumbent vendor in Safaricom’s western network, Aviat Networks knew itsTDM equipment end to end. Whereas Ethernet-to-E1 converters had been usedto accommodate WiMAX data on the network edge to make room for packettraffic and reserve E1s for 2G/3G voice/data traffic, Eclipse Packet Node hybridradios now carry both forms of traffic natively. Also, 3G data is now carried asEthernet freeing E1s for voice. The platform scales with data traffic, which hadbeen going up faster than backhaul capacity. Not only is Safaricom ready formigration to 4G/all IP but it also has already partially migrated its 3G to all IP.