Bahrain plans faster Internet by year-end
Manama, June 26, 2013
Plans for faster and cheaper Internet services will be rolled out in Bahrain before the end of the year, a report said.
It comes as the newly elected board of the Bahrain Internet Exchange (BIX) met for the first time yesterday to discuss future projects, according to the report in the Gulf Daily News, our sister publication.
BIX, which was formed by a government decree to improve the country's bandwidth, has invested $30 million to connect Bahrain to one of the world's largest Internet service providers in India.
Tata Communication has a line spanning from Mumbai to Marseille in France, which has several branches connected to different parts of Asia, Europe and the Gulf.
Bahrain will connect a 50km cable to Tata's Gulf cable, meaning when fully activated it will be able to increase the country's Internet capacity by more than 26 times.
"Currently we are able to provide a capacity of 465mbps. The new Bahrain National Broadband Network (BNBN) will be able to offer a capacity of 12,400mbps," said BIX corporate relations director Nimisha Patel.
"The landing point for the line is in Amwaj and that was chosen because there are no plans for reclamation in that area for at least the next 20 years. The line is built and ready, but it will take a little time before it can function fully as it needs to be connected locally.
"I would expect more mobile operators to opt for this as 4G is being offered by more mobile carriers. Definitely within this year Bahrain should expect better bandwidths at lower costs."
BIX sells its services to licensed Internet service providers, but the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority regulates the prices.
"We will improve communication in Bahrain, we will enhance the country's fibre optic networks through the BNBN," said BIX chairman Brigadier Mansour Mohammed Al Hajiri. "The goal is to offer high-speed internet at reduced prices as well as reliable connectivity."
Brigadier Hajiri hopes the new system will improve communication between ministries and provide more reliable e-Government services as BIX provides Internet to 47 government bodies. – TradeArabia News Service