Genoa is working on the creation of a consortium to implement the Ge-Dix project, acronym for Genoa data internet exchange. The city as a data interchange point for internet service providers.
He announced it Luca Beltramino, chief data center officer of RaiWay and ambassador of Genoa in the world at the Genoa Smart Week, connecting it to the landing of three submarine cables in Liguria (one in Savona and two in Genoa) in the coming years.
Beltramino gave an example to understand the current situation: «Imagine that to go from Principe to Brignole by car the satellite navigator makes us pass through Milan. This is what happens today with the data: to reach Cipressa today we pass through Milan and Turin, even to get to Seborga we even pass through Milan, Turin and Marseille ».
The benefits of avoiding this situation are obvious according to Beltramino: bandwidth, security, fast international data exchange and lower latency. “Most European cities have Internet Exchange Points because network congestion and routing efficiency improve.”
The example of what happened to Marseille in 5 years, with the city becoming one of the 10 internet traffic nodes worldwide, it is clear: telecommunication operators, content distribution platforms such as Netflix, social networks and cloud operators have been attracted. The network effect has been created: networks attract other networks.
Giuseppe Sini, head of the international business unit of Retelit, a group active in the telecommunications, optical fiber and data center sectors confirms: “The cities where the submarine cables arrive then become points of attraction for the investment of many other network infrastructures, neutral data centers that host internet exchanges, internet providers, cloud providers. Our goal is to bring traffic back to the Mediterranean, after the success of Marseille ». Retelit’s Liguria Landing Platform project deals with critical infrastructures concerning data flows of fundamental importance and of great value, which, as Sini points out, brings two types of advantages: “In addition to the economic one, there is that of data control , which is also strategic in terms of geopolitical positioning. To make Liguria attractive, an infrastructural investment for the landing in Genoa will be important, making it possible to host a submarine cable and guaranteeing it from any attacks ».
«This is also the case with us – Beltramino is convinced – Genoa will become part of the internet ecosystem. There will be a reduction in network congestion, a reduction in costs, a lower latency, creating new investments, and GDP ”. For the creation of the data internet exchange point, a consortium is being created which includes, among others BBBel, Fastweb, Tim, Digital Liguria, with the patronage of the Municipality of Genoa and the ok of the Liguria Region and the University of Genoa.
The team is already active: “We hope to officially create the Consortium by the end of the year or in the first quarter of 2022 – says Beltramino – with set up and commercial launch within six months and the startup of the business, which is non-profit, but only according to the city, in the third quarter of 2022 ».
Also in 2022, in the meantime, spark (company of the Tim galaxy) will complete the Tyrrhenian section of the Blue & Raman Submarine Cable System, which starts from Genoa, crosses the Tyrrhenian Sea and reaches Palermo and then continues to Mumbai. Enrico Maria Bagnasco (chief technology officer of the company) explains: «A transport of 20 optical fibers, over 400 terabytes in an open system. Other cables pass west of Sardinia and Corsica, while we cross the Tyrrhenian Sea, as well as pass through the Strait of Messina. Another advantage is that we skip the Suez Canal: passing through Israel and Jordan ». In Genoa, the installation will take place at the end of next summer. Then the cable will continue towards Milan and Northern Europe with two separate routes. Bagnasco points out that Genoa becomes not only a point of arrival, but a European alternative to the Marseille pole, which hosts an accumulation of submarine cables that is to become critical. The piping to collect the cables will be placed in the Fiera area by June next year. The hub of this cable will be at Lagaccio: a medium power data center.