GBI diversifies North Route through Iraq, enhancing Smart Network

GBI diversifies North Route through Iraq, enhancing Smart Network

Global cloud, connectivity and content enabler Gulf Bridge International (GBI) has announced an update to the North Route of its subsea cable meshed Smart Network, improving route diversification and enhancing the resilience of internet connectivity to and from the region.

The North Route, which now also connects the Gulf to Europe through Iraq, will leverage a wider range of terrestrial networks established by GBI and its partners. By circumventing the Arab peninsula completely, it shortens latency significantly – with latency between Europe and the Gulf data centres reduced by 40ms. Furthermore, adding diversification to existing North Route paths through Iran provides redundancy which means users remain connected in the case of outage. This is vital in ensuring the continuation of mission-critical operations.  

The enhancing of the North Route increases the overall resilience of GBI’s Smart Network. This also includes the South Route, which connects the Gulf to Europe via the Suez Canal and the Mediterranean. 

The move is a welcome development for telecommunications, cloud, gaming and Internet Service Providers (ISPs) in the Gulf region as data demands on data cables reach an all-time high with mission-critical applications require expanding bandwidth and new low latency-dependent technologies such as 5G, IoT and AI move into the mainstream. It will also help the region prepare to meet the surge in internet traffic anticipated around the World Cup 2022 in Qatar which will kick off in November. 

“It’s an adage old as time: don’t put all your eggs in one basket,” said Brendan Press, CCO of GBI. “Companies must shift away from overreliance on the same cable routes as that can produce bottlenecks and potential outages. They must work with providers that can provide diversification and, therefore, assurance that connectivity will always be available whatever the situation.  

“By diversifying our North Route so that it now also passes through Iraq, we are providing that assurance. When you consider that we also have our South Route that runs through Egypt, we can confidently say our Smart Network is playing a critical role in keeping the world connected and is helping to propel the region into a global connectivity hub.”

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