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Use WDM to maximise infrastructure for 5G success

JOHANNESBURG – October 02, 2019 – With new technologies regularly being rolled out for 5G - the fifth generation of mobile networks – operators can maximise their existing infrastructure to meet customer demands with waveguide division multiplexing (WDM). This is according to ProLabs[], a global leader in optical networking infrastructure, as telecom providers continue to prepare their networks globally for the next wave of wireless communication.

Marcel Fouché, networking and storage general manager at value-added distributor, Networks Unlimited Africa, which distributes ProLabs in sub-Saharan Africa, points out that investing in new optical fibre infrastructure is expensive, and many operators are considering re-using passive optical networks (PONS).

“ProLabs, however, suggests a better option to maximise existing assets while simultaneously planning for the future,” he says, “namely a combination of WDM and common public radio interface (CPRI). WDM enables the operator to send more than one data bit down the same fibre length at the same time. It fully maximises existing optical fibre infrastructure by adding multiple wavelengths to send data across the same fibre, increasing the rate of data transfer and multiplying capacity.”

The new range of WDM transceivers from ProLabs performs in environmental extremes: its wavelength-stabilising technology can endure temperatures from as low as -40°C to as high as +85°C, making this an ideal complement to existing fibre infrastructures. As the country’s major mobile network operators continue waiting for details around the release of final radio frequency spectrum allocation for both 4G and 5G network Fouché notes that infrastructure preparations still need to be made in advance of the regulatory clarity.

“While the state has delayed in allocating both 4G and 5G radio spectrum in South Africa[], local network providers need to plan now for their networks’ future 5G requirements. From a practical perspective, 5G will need more bandwidth per cell. The use of WDM allows operators to get the most out of current fibre networks and deliver an increased capacity, while the combination of CPRI will bring a major increase in speed. This means that service providers can use this offering across their entire infrastructure,” he concludes.

You can read more on the ProLabs solution >here:

About Networks Unlimited
Networks Unlimited Africa is a value-added distributor, offering cutting edge solutions from the network edge to the Datacentre, and addresses key areas such as cybersecurity, Hybrid cloud, datacentre and infrastructure, networking and integration, SD-WAN solutions, network performance management and application performance management, application delivery networking and load balancing, data centre in-a-box, and data management and backup solutions. Most of our solutions are highly regarded by Gartner and will be found on their respective magic quadrants. The company distributes best-of-breed products, including Attivo Networks, Cofense, Carbon Black, Fortinet, F5, Hypergrid, Mellanox Technologies, NETSCOUT, ProLabs, RSA, Rubrik, SevOne, Silver Peak, Thales, Tintri and Uplogix.

Since its formation in 1994, Networks Unlimited Africa evolved to become one of the very few true, value-added distribution companies in Africa. NU has continuously adapted to today’s increasingly competitive environment to provide product solutions that offer best and latest solutions for companies across Africa, through our extensive partner network covering over 38 countries in Africa.


Networks Unlimited, Michelle Naidoo, michelle.naidoo@nu.co.za, +27 (0) 11 202 8400

icomm, Vivienne Fouché, +27 (0) 82 602 1635, vivienne@pr.co.za, www.icomm-pr.co.za




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