UAE-IX in Dubai: DE-CIX takes Internet Exchange in Middle East to the starting line

October 1, 2012 marks the start of UAE-IX, an Internet exchange in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE). DE-CIX, the world’s largest Internet Exchange, based in Frankfurt, Germany, has provided know-how and support for the hub’s operation. UAE-IX is a neutral Internet traffic exchange platform that interconnects global networks and, above all, network operators and content providers in the GCC region. The UAE-IX is built on a fully redundant switching platform located in a neutral secure datacenter in Dubai. The new Internet Exchange will reduce latency times by up to 80 per cent and costs by up to 70 per cent for GCC providers. Moreover, UAE-IX will improve IP network resilience and robustness and will also help provide reliable connectivity within the GCC.  

The Gulf economy is booming and so is the region’s data traffic. HDTV, online gaming, multimedia, and cloud computing are driving data traffic here as well. Until now, Internet service providers in the GCC region have had to exchange their traffic via Europe, Asia or North America, leading to high latency rates. Initiated by the UAE’s Telecommunication Regulatory Authority (TRA) and supported by DE-CIX, UAE-IX delivers a highly available local alternative for regional traffic exchange, localizing Internet content.  It will dramatically improve routing efficiency and the quality of the Internet experience for end-users.

Internet hub in the GCC

“Across continents, data traffic is on the rise,” says Harald A. Summa, Managing Director of DE-CIX Management GmbH in Frankfurt. “The Internet’s global infrastructure must grow with it so that data travel shorter distances to get to users. As the operator of the largest Internet exchange in the world, we have drawn on our long-standing expertise to help design UAE-IX. UAE-IX will turn the GCC into an independent international hub for the digital economy and will no doubt attract Internet service providers from Europe, Africa and even India, Pakistan and China.”

The TRA stated “The TRA is pleased to be behind the UAE Internet Exchange, the open peering platform in the Middle-East fostering reliable and robust connectivity within the region and beyond”, adding “the UAE Internet Exchange will dramatically improve the end-customer experience for connected operators.”