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Growing the Internet 26 August 2015

Case Study: The Official launch of the Palestine Internet Exchange Point (PIX)

Nadira Alaraj
By Nadira AlarajVice Chairman at Internet Society - Palestine Chapter

On 2 September 2015 the Palestinian Internet community will celebrate a major milestone in the history of the Internet in Palestine when it officially launches the Palestine Internet Exchange Point (PIX).

What’s an Internet Exchange Point?

An Internet Exchange Point, or IXP as it’s known in the world of the Internet, is a piece of equipment that helps keep all the data that you produce move across the Internet faster and at a lower cost. For businesses or organizations, it means there’s now a place where they can come together to connect their technology and exchange. This also helps them save cost boost the speed in which data flows across the wires that make up the Internet.

How We Did It

The decision to establish this exchange point was taken in July 2011 by the Internet Society Palestine Chapter with encouragement of an active IT Community and in coordination with the Ministry of Information Technology (MTIT). Then, we reached out to the wider local IT Community to involve various other people from the legal, operational and technical communities in Palestine. The decision was a timely one, as the exclusivity rights for the largest telecom operator had just came to an end, which meant that the market was opened for Internet Service Providers to connect to any network and upstream provider they wish.

PIX first came alive in June 2012 and is now ready to be launched and provide production-level quality and availability. PIX is hosted in one of the prominent Palestinian universities and acts as the central meeting point for Palestine’s Internet Service Providers. The location itself was chosen for its neutrality and provided additional value of ease of reach and access by ISPs and other networks, being in the center of Ramallah city. PIX was built to route all intra-Palestinian Internet traffic among the operators as efficiently as possible and always with friendly service!.

In addition to all of this, PIX also hosts delivery servers for leading Content Delivery Networks and Root servers. Efforts are underway to collect local content for a PIX local library for all Internet users to benefit from at high speed, as well as planned country-level network services. All these help in advancing Internet in Palestine by assisting ISPs and content providers to provide content in faster and cheaper manner, allowing the advancement of content industry.

While a lot of volunteer work went into the creation of this IXP, the project was fully supported by the MTIT, the local Internet community, the Internet Society (through its former Community Grants Programme), Packet Clearing House and many other regional and international organizations.

The official launch of the Palestine Internet Exchange Point on 2 September will be an occasion to celebrate the achievement of this important national project and present the PIX to the wider Palestinian community.

Intrested in attending the launch?

Date: 2 September 2015

Time: 10:00am – 3:00pm

Place: Ramallah Cultural Palace

Registration: info@isoc.ps

Want to find out more?

And to find out more about the Internet Society Palestine Chapter & its activities, please visit their Facebook page.

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Disclaimer: Viewpoints expressed in this post are those of the author and may or may not reflect official Internet Society positions.

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