Leading Saudi operator begins expanding network

One of Saudi Arabia’s leading operators is addressing dramatic traffic growth through the construction of a resilient, adaptable and scalable nationwide network...


One of Saudi Arabia’s leading operators is addressing dramatic traffic growth through the construction of a resilient, adaptable and scalable nationwide network. Mobily has commissioned Ciena Corporation for the rollout of new services, selecting solutions from across the network specialist’s portfolio.

These include Carrier Ethernet, optical transport and switching, as well as management and maintenance services, and are aimed at bringing Ethernet services to the network edge and integrate packet-optical switching and transport through the network core.

The Middle East is driving major growth across the telecommunications landscape, with significant increases in mobile and fixed broadband penetration, regional IT projects, as well as investments in new regional and international markets.

With over 40% of the country’s market, Mobily’s focus is on supporting high-bandwidth applications and enabling the reliable delivery of consumer and business services, including mobile TV, video on demand and high-speed Internet access.

With the realisation that substantial infrastructure investment would be required to accomplish this, the provider has selected Ciena to provide its new network foundation. Ciena’s Packet-Optical Transport platforms will provide up to a tenfold capacity increase, enabling the operator to scale and optimise its network to support the delivery of advanced services and applications.

In order to better manage the growth in traffic, Ciena’s Packet-Optical Switching solutions will use OTN and distributed intelligence to increase network automation and resiliency. A range of switches from the firm’s Carrier Ethernet Service Delivery portfolio enable allow for the support of Carrier Ethernet-based mobile backhaul, as well as Ethernet aggregation and delivery of high-velocity business & transport Carrier Ethernet services to its customer base.

“As our capacity needs and services portfolio mature, our next-generation network will be instrumental in ensuring we address our customers’ critical business challenges and evolving demands, from the network edge all the way through to the core,” said Abdul Aziz Al Tamami, Chief Operations Officer at Mobily.

Ciena’s Country Manager for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Yasser Alobaidan, commented, “With applications such as video, teleconferencing and cloud computing driving bandwidth growth, there is an ever-rising demand for capacity in the Middle East.”

Mobily’s upgraded core and metro network architecture will combine Ciena’s ActivFlex 6500 Packet-Optical Platform and ActivFlex 5430 Reconfigurable Switching System for an initial transport capacity increase of up to 40 Gbps per wavelength, with a seamless upgrade path to 100 Gbps as bandwidth requirements change over time.

Converging layers zero, one and two, the platforms will also allow Mobily to deploy a combination of TDM and data services, while providing a smooth migration path to a fully packet-switched environment, including packet-optical switching capacity increases of up to 3.6 Tbps of capacity that can scale up to 15 Tbps as the carrier’s requirements evolve.

Ciena’s LE-311v Service Delivery Switch, ActivEdge 5410 Service Aggregation Switch and ActivEdge 3900 series of Service Delivery Switches will allow the network to support Carrier Ethernet-based mobile backhaul and Ethernet business services.

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