Telkom and MWEB peering at last?

In October 2010 MWEB CEO Rudi Jansen surprised the local Internet market when he announced that their days of paying for local transit are over.

“We have made a conscious decision that as from next month [November 2010] we will not pay anybody for transit traffic any more. So if you don’t want to peer with us, that is it! We will not pay you one single cent any more,” Jansen said at the time.

Jansen stuck to his word, and in November 2010 MWEB severed their paid transit links to SAIX, MTN, Vodacom and any other ISP who did not peer with them.

This strategy paid dividends, and by the end of November MWEB was freely sharing traffic with every large ISP in the country, with the exception of Telkom/SAIX.

Over the last ten months traffic between Telkom and MWEB’s local networks was routed internationally, resulting in high latency and slower response times.

Rudi Jansen
Rudi Jansen

This seems to have changed over the past weekend (3 September 2011). On Saturday, users started reporting that they were seeing far lower latency between MWEB and Telkom.

According to MyBroadband’s forum members they started noticing latency of below 50ms on Saturday, and a trace route from an MWEB ADSL connection to the Telkom website confirmed that some form of local peering is taking place.

Current information suggests that Telkom and MWEB is exchanging traffic via a few private peering links instead of using CINX and JINX for peering purposes.

MWEB was contacted for information about this development, but the ISP would not confirm the reports. MWEB explained that they have a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) with Telkom.

Telkom’s Senior Managing Executive for Wholesale and Networks Bashier Sallie would also not divulge any details when asked about the peering between Telkom and MWEB.

Bashier Sallie
Bashier Sallie

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Telkom and MWEB peering at last?