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The leading Internet Exchange (IX) in the Middle East part of datamena, has broken its peak peering traffic record on the IX in March.

The carrier and data centre-neutral UAE-IX has seen a peak traffic increase of 40%, collaboration tools and gaming data traffic increase by 100%, and streaming traffic increase by 50%.

Quarantines and lockdowns across the Middle East caused by COVID-19 are changing user behaviours and that is highlighting the critical role of peering in the region. COVID-19 is driving traffic increases as businesses adopt remote working, while end users increase content consumption and dedicate more time to online gaming. The result has been peering partners at UAE-IX increasing capacity by up to 400% to support growing user demand.

“UAE-IX is supporting surging IP traffic growth and enabling optimised end user experiences during this unique and challenging time. As more people adopt remote working practices and consume content at home, UAE-IX is providing critical support for Internet in the MENA region and is helping to minimise disruption to our personal and professional lives. Throughout this global crisis, we will ensure that UAE-IX is delivering a resilient, reliable and trusted peering platform that local and global organisations can depend on,” said Abou Moustafa, Vice President - Enterprise Fixed, datamena and Broadcast Enterprise Business at du.

UAE-IX is the largest carrier and data centre-neutral IX in the Middle East. It serves carriers, cloud and content providers, Internet service providers and enterprises. More than 70 peering partners are able to exchange traffic on the IX and offer end users an optimised experience when using their applications and services. UAE-IX is managed by datamena in partnership with DE-CIX.

“The changing behaviour has a big impact on Internet traffic. Kids have been out of school and people in the home office for a couple of weeks now. We assume that the home schooling and home office activities are causing the change in traffic and the capacity needs for collaboration tools. In times when people have to practice social distancing and perhaps self-isolate, a direct connection to family, friends, and the company environment via the various private and business applications is essential. The operation of this application layer and the exchange of data must run smoothly. Here we see it as our maxim to guarantee our customers ­– and thus Internet users worldwide – a trouble-free, secure, and reliable Internet,” said Ivo Ivanov, CEO at DE-CIX International.

“I’m proud to see that UAE-IX is supporting organisations across the Middle East and has enabled them to rapidly adapt to changing user demands. It is critical that our peering partners can scale up with reliable and resilient peering infrastructure and be ready for any situation. While we can’t predict the future, we can always be prepared.” In June 2019, UAE-IX was connected to DE-CIX Marseille with the GlobePEER Remote service, enabling more organisations to seamlessly peer across the globe. It offers a peering fabric that spans across three major IXs in Europe, the Middle East and Asia. This enables peering partners to adapt to surging global demand and prepare for unexpected events.

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