Neotel today announced that it is the first telecommunication provider in South Africa to be awarded a Cisco Powered-designated Metro Ethernet offering based on the Cisco Internet Protocol Next-Generation Network (IP NGN) architecture.
Neotel’s Metro Ethernet service, which was launched last year, is already being used by a substantial number of enterprise clients. According to Neotel it is responding to a growing business need for converged services and a true broadband offering at affordable rates.
Currently the services that can be enabled with the Cisco Metro Ethernet aggregation platform, upon which Neotel’s network is based, include voice and data. These services will eventually be extended to incorporate IPTV, video on demand, gaming, digital media, broadcast capability and services which directly address the specialized needs of consumers and business customers such as e-learning and tele-health consulting for example.
“We strongly believe that collaborating with Neotel will help to maximise their ability to grow their business, improve productivity, create cost savings and support a positive return on investment,” commented Steve Midgley, managing director for Cisco in South Africa. “This project and its service offerings will demonstrate to the world that South Africa is capable of delivering the true broadband connectivity and more importantly the relevant value added services vital for business, consumers and government.”
“The telecommunications industry is investing substantially in transforming or building networks to revolutionize the power of convergence,” says Ajay Pandey, CEO and MD of Neotel. “This is to ensure that the end user gets the benefit of cost effective and faster to market services with full convergence and future mobility features.”
Neotel has since inception deployed a converged next generation network to allow the company to adapt quickly to market dynamics. “We believe this accolade sends a very strong message to the business community that they can use Neotel’s offerings with confidence,” he says.
Entry into the Cisco Powered Program requires thorough technical design validations, certification that the underlying network is not only designed, but also deployed as per the Cisco best practice across the globe. “This is a major achievement for Neotel as the first telecommunications service provider to achieve this in South Africa,” says Pandey.
Service Providers across the globe are deploying Metro Ethernet Carrier Networks to provide converged services with the capability to scale to higher capacities from a single last mile. This means that capacity can be scaled with very little effort from the service provider and in much quicker turnaround times. Ethernet also provides much higher bandwidth than that which South African companies have been limited to.
According to Neotel its participation in the Cisco Powered Program helps ensure that it has the equipment, staff, and quality processes in place to provide high-quality IP services. Cisco Powered service designations are granted on a per-service basis, and include an annual assessment of program members to help them maintain high levels of customer satisfaction.
“We believe the Cisco Powered Programme membership will assure our customers that Neotel service offerings, whether a single service or a portfolio of services, are being delivered over a network based on Cisco technology – an attribute inherently associated with security, compatibility, reliability, quality and performance,” Pandey concludes.