Neutral exchange urged
The non-profit Thai Network Information Center Foundation (THNIC), an internetrelated organisation, has deployed what it says is Bangkok’s first neutral internet exchange infrastructure to promote the country becoming an Asean internet connectivity centre by 2018.
An internet exchange point is a physical infrastructure through which internet service providers (ISPs) exchange traffic between their networks (autonomous systems).
Having a neutral internet exchange point will reduce costs for internet transit service for local ISPs by 30-60% and improve service quality, said THNIC vice-chairman Kanchana Kanchanasut.
“The move will help to drive the government’s initiative to develop a digital economy,” she said.
The foundation set up an operating unit, BKNIX Co, to operate the internet exchange service, with initial registered capital of 1.1 million baht. It obtained a licence from the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission for the service.
Ms Kanchana said the exchange points allowed all ISPs and design network architects to use its facility for free during the first year.
Unlike the existing national internet exchange system in Thailand, which was designed with a network architecture that transits from other networks to connect customers, THNIC’s system allows direct international connectivity without the need for multi-peer connectivity.
Nine companies operate national internet exchange points in Thailand. There are 20 active ISPs out of 100 total companies.
THNIC obtained financial support of US$12 million from Alcatel-Lucent to deploy routers. BKNIX’s customers include University Network and United Information Highway.
Ms Kanchana said neutral internet exchange points would also help to attract global internet firms to set up their servers here, reducing international bandwidth costs.
Sebastien Laurent, managing director of Alcatel-Lucent (Thailand), said with the surge of devices and digital apps, domestic internet demand was likely to explode.