Tejas Networks: Enabling Digital Transformation in Africa

28-Jul-2022 03:36 PM Future-proof networks

Global communication networks are experiencing unprecedented growth in network traffic due to a rapid uptick in mobile and home broadband usage, large-scale enterprise cloud adoption and the emergence of hyper-scale data centers. The pandemic has significantly accelerated this trend with consumers, businesses and governments speeding up their adoption of broadband and digital technologies by several years. The consequent rise in bandwidth demand is straining existing telecom networks, especially in developing countries, forcing communication service providers (CSP) to explore novel means to cost-effectively expand service coverage and increase network capacities. Tejas Networks has launched three innovative product offerings that are gaining significant traction among CSPs in Africa by enabling them to efficiently manage this traffic surge.

Converging Wireline and Wireless Technologies: Covid-19 has reinforced the need for CSPs to build a more flexible and agile network that can offer both wireless and wireline connectivity choices to customers. Since fiber penetration and right-of-way constraints are an issue in many parts of Africa, fixed wireless access (FWA) is emerging as a good alternative to fiber broadband by eliminating coverage gaps and ensuring a faster rollout of broadband services. Tejas’s TJ1400 UCB (Ultra Converged Broadband) addresses this challenge effectively by replacing multiple fixed-function network elements deployed at CSP POPs (points of presence) such as FWA BBU (Baseband Unit), FTTX OLT (Optical Line Terminal), Carrier Ethernet aggregation and Optical Transport in a single universal edge/access equipment thereby delivering 50%+ savings in the total cost of network ownership. TJ1400 UCB has been further enhanced to include full-fledged 4G/LTE-based mobile broadband which can be upgraded to 5G in the future.

High-capacity Upgrades through Incremental Investments: The growing consumption of high-bandwidth applications is posing a major challenge for CSPs in Africa that are operating low-speed 10G DWDM networks.  Wholesale transformation of these backbone networks to higher-capacity 100G/100G+ coherent DWDM technologies is time-consuming, expensive and potentially service-disruptive. Tejas’s intelligent Alien Wavelength technology enables such TSPs to achieve a 200X growth in Metro and Backbone network capacities by transmitting 100G/100G+ waves on unused optical channels in an incumbent 10G infrastructure. State-of-the-art solutions such as those from Tejas also support advanced capabilities such as the elimination of guard bands between 10G and 100G/100G+ DWDM wavelengths in order to maximize spectral utilization. Tejas’s intelligent alien wavelength offering is also bundled with sophisticated software toolkits that help operators run pre-deployment simulations and conduct comprehensive physical layer studies prior to actual rollout, thereby reducing network downtime, optimizing field engineer’s efforts and minimizing the overall cost and time of deployment. Further, by combining with “sub-lambda” grooming at the OTN layer, bandwidth efficiency can be significantly increased thereby reducing the overall cost per bit of the network.

Multi-terabit Scalability with a Pay-as-you-Grow Architecture: As telecom networks continue to be inundated by data traffic, CSPs in Africa had no option but to invest upfront in bulky and expensive multi-terabit digital cross-connects and packet switches to future-proof their networks. With the launch of TJ1600S/I, the world’s largest disaggregated multi-terabit Packet/OTN switch, Tejas Networks provides an alternate pathway for CSPs to scale their networks.  By leveraging an innovative “leaf-and-spine” architecture, TJ1600S/I can seamlessly scale from 900Gbps to 48Tbps switching capacity through incremental investments in switching capacities. This “pay-as-you-grow” approach brings tremendous flexibility to the ordering process and network planning for telecom customers. Besides this, TJ1600’s unique breakout architecture enables full utilization of fabric capacity with fewer number of fabric cards thus reducing overall cost and space requirements.

About Tejas Networks: Tejas Networks is India’s largest R&D-driven telecom equipment company, which successfully grew from being a startup to being India’s first deep-technology product company to be publicly listed. The company designs & manufactures a full range of leading-edge optical, broadband and wireless networking equipment that are used by telecom service providers in 75+ countries, including over 50 mobile operators, ISPs and wholesale bandwidth providers in Africa. Tejas products power one of the world’s largest greenfield rural broadband (“BharatNet”) and railway WiFi networks and are deployed by all large telcos, telecom PSUs and utilities in India. Tejas Networks is ranked among the top-10 suppliers in the global optical aggregation and broadband access segments and is a part of the Tata Group.

The author, Arnob Roy, is the COO at Tejas Networks. The article was published in The Diplomatist.