Nairobi to host Africa's 1st roaming exchange hub to lower international voice, video costs

By JAMES KARIUKI, [email protected]

Posted Monday, September 12 2016 at 19:53
IN SUMMARY
[ul]
[li]“It will diversify players and revenue opportunities for GRX and Internet protocol Exchange (IPX) providers, a situation that will bring down Mobile Network Operator (MNO) costs for customers in Kenya and the region.”[/li][/ul]
East Africans are set to enjoy lower charges and improved quality of international voice and video calls as Nairobi becomes the first African city to host a roaming exchange facility. To make an international call from the region currently, the signals have to pass through the European carrier, attracting roaming charges in the process. The Global System of Mobile Communication Roaming Exchange (GRX) located at the East African Data Centre will eliminate the fees currently paid to overseas carriers and open new revenue streams for mobile phone operators. ICT Secretary Kate Getao said international calls will no longer have to pass through Europe after the GRX was unveiled on Nairobi’s Mombasa Road on Thursday.

“The establishment of the facility which is also the fourth in the world of its kind will lower phone call roaming charges and provide high definition voice and video calling” she said.

The African Union (AU)-funded GRX is expected to provide seamlessly connection to the other three GRXs in Amsterdam (Netherlands), Singapore and Washington (America). Dr Getao said the facility has also given Nairobi a new stature as an ICT hub as it will handle mobile traffic originating from local operators and neighbouring countries.

“It will diversify players and revenue opportunities for GRX and Internet protocol Exchange (IPX) providers, a situation that will bring down Mobile Network Operator (MNO) costs for customers in Kenya and the region.”

During the launch, the AU Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy Dr Elham Ibrahim said fees paid to overseas carriers to exchange intra-continental traffic on behalf of African states would no longer apply since all activities will be handled by the Nairobi facility. Dr Elham said the exchanges were costly and had hindered developments in the sector prompting the AU to provide grants to initiate the African Internet Exchange System that promoted intra-African Internet traffic. Dr Getao welcomed the AU’s intervention saying Internet exchange points in the continent had increased from 18 to 32 over the past five years. The Nairobi GRX hub will act as a link between local and foreign mobile phone operators, thereby easing the need for inter-operator agreements. This means calls passing through the Nairobi GRX hub will directly be linked to the other three hubs to the end user mobile operator on real-time.

[email protected]

2 Likes

“fandastic”

1 Like

How now? How did @Mtanzania Magufuli miss this opportunity? Was he sleeping on the job while Kenya swept into action? Chapa Kazi tu :smiley:

3 Likes

Najua wewe hujui nini unaongea basi wacha nikufunze. South Africa tuu ndie wana uwezo wa kupungiza bei ya simu au video kwasababu wana satellite ya Sunsat. Ukiangalia bei ya international calls utaona South Africa tuu ndie wanapata cheap calls kwa sasa. Nyinyi ile bei mnaweza punguza pengine ni bei ya Faxe

Na nikikuita @ng’ombe ya Changanyika utasema nimekutusi? Umefanya research yako kwa kina kweli?
[ATTACH=full]57233[/ATTACH]

2 Likes

Kule ni uzembe na ungati tu

Please @spear wacha hii kazi Kuna mtu atajitia kitanzi

1 Like