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29 November 2022

UAE-IX celebrates 10th birthday

Ivo Ivanov and Abou Moustafa

UAE-IX powered by DE-CIX celebrated its 10th birthday last week during our annual Peering workshop event. Starting from an empty data center, the Internet Exchange today is a global Internet hub bringing together the network operators, content, applications, and cloud services to serve the entire GCC region with resilient and low latency connectivity.

Vast improvement in latency

While in 2012, 90 percent of data traffic that should have been exchanged locally had to be forwarded through Internet Exchanges in Europe, ten years later, the reverse is the case: in 2022, 90 percent of local data is exchanged locally, resulting in a vast improvement in the latency  and the performance of applications.

UAE-IX has experienced more than 30 percent growth in data traffic this year, and more than 180 percent since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020, proving its criticality for the digital economy of the region. For example, UAE-IX was able to provide seamless support for the government’s 400 percent connectivity upgrade to Microsoft to support the migration of all 1.1 million pupils in the UAE to home-schooling in the face of the pandemic.

New initiative for best-ever connectivity in the region

A new collaboration led by the UAE’s Telecommunications and Digital Government Regulatory Authority (TDRA) interconnects UAE-IX with Etisalat by e&’s SmartHub IX. This cooperation allows all connected customers, regardless of provider, the opportunity to interconnect with each other cost-effectively – the first collaboration of its kind in the entire Middle East.