|[December 03, 2013]
New Study Reveals How Internet Exchange Points Spur Internet Growth in Latin America
MONTEVIDEO, Uruguay --(Business Wire)--
The Internet Society recently published the results of a study that
demonstrates the far-reaching economic and societal benefits of
establishing Internet Exchange Points (IXPs) in emerging markets. The
study, commissioned by the Internet Society and conducted by Professor
Hernan Galperin of the Universidad de San Andrés in Argentina, examined
the critical cost and performance benefits of IXPs in Argentina, Brazil,
Colombia, and Ecuador - countries on the leading edge of Internet growth
in Latin America.
Analogous with the role that international airports play in airline
traffic, IXPs serve as critical hubs for data traffic exchange in the
global Internet infrastructure. Over 350 IXPs around the world enable
local Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and Internet backbone carriers
to efficiently and cost-effectively exchange Internet traffic. Many
emerging markets do not have well-established IXPs, forcing domestic
Internet traffic onto long-distance international links, resulting in
significantly higher costs and quality of service challenges.
This new study identifies the positive impact that IXPs have made,
including reduced telecommunications costs, faster and better local data
exchange, and local technical capacity development. For example:
To date, nine IXPs are operational in Argentina as part of the Cabase
system that was created in 1998, connecting over 80 network operators.
Internet transit costs have been reduced from USD $500 per Mbps per
month in one city to about USD $40 per Mbps per month. Service
providers have been able to expand their networks and quality of
In 2004, the Comitê Gestor da Internet (CGI (News - Alert)) launched an initiative
called PTT Metro to create IXPs across Brazil, starting with their
first IXP in São Paulo. As of April 2013, there were 22 IXPs in
operation, covering 16 of Brazil's 26 states. On aggregate, the IXPs
associated with the PTT Metro initiative are exchanging over 170Gbps
at peak hours, and providing better and faster connectivity toregions
of Brazil that had poor Internet service.
In Ecuador, international transit costs hover around USD $100 per Mbps
per month. Local traffic can be exchanged at the IXP in Quito (NAP.EC)
for as little as USD $1 per Mbps per month. Without an IXP, operators
would exchange local traffic through international transit routes and
the additional wholesale costs for local ISPs would be USD $7.2
million per year.
The Colombian exchange point, NAP Colombia, started in 2000 in
response to frequent disruptions in the domestic backhaul network and
international links. By exchanging traffic locally, and later by
installing content caches at the IXP, local ISPs were able to reduce
their dependence on international routes, thus reducing costs and,
most importantly, increasing service reliability.
"This study highlights the critical role that IXPs are playing in Latin
America - from human capacity and network development to better quality
of service and increased uptake of services," said Sebastian Bellagamba,
Regional Bureau Director for Latin America and the Caribbean at the
Internet Society. "Offering more than just cost and performance
benefits, well-run IXPs serve as a catalyst to dramatically enrich a
country's Internet ecosystem, opening a new world of possibilities with
comparably minimal investment. We appreciate the collaboration with
Professor Galperin and hope that this study will help inform the
dialogue among government, business, and technology leaders of emerging
countries to show them the benefits that IXPs can provide for developing
partnerships for Internet growth in the region."
Lead author of the study Hernan Galperin stated, "This report shows the
important role that IXPs have played in the development of the Internet
in Latin America. This role is likely to become more important as
countries in the region address existing challenges such as network
security, the improvement in the quality of services, and the reduction
in access prices."
The study was conducted as part of the Internet Society's Internet
Traffic Exchange Programme. This programme aims to foster robust,
efficient, and cost-effective Internet interconnection environments in
emerging economies, and furthers the Internet Society's overall mission
to promote the open development, evolution, and use of the Internet for
the benefit of all people throughout the world.
The full study in English and Spanish is available for download at http://www.internetsociety.org/doc/connectivity-latin-america-and-caribbean-role-internet-exchange-points.
Funding for this study was provided in part by Google (News - Alert) under the IXP
Toolkit & Best Practices Grant Project.
About the Internet Society
The Internet Society is the trusted independent source for Internet
information and thought leadership from around the world. With its
principled vision and substantial technological foundation, the Internet
Society promotes open dialogue on Internet policy, technology, and
future development among users, companies, governments, and other
organizations. Working with its members and Chapters around the world,
the Internet Society enables the continued evolution and growth of the
Internet for everyone. For more information, visit www.internetsociety.org.
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