Tata Communications' TGN Intra-Asia undersea cable route was broken and it will be repaired from July 12 to 19. During that time, Internet in Vietnam will be affected.
Figure 1 - TGN-IA Cable Map
Source: Tata Communications
This incident occurred shortly after the maintenance of the Asia-American Gateway (AAG) submarine cable route (connecting Vietnam with Hong Kong and the US).
Viettel said this cable route was broken on June 27, coinciding with the maintenance of AAG but until July 12 it will be repaired. The broken point is 45km from the landing station in Singapore.
Specifically, this route will stop serving from July 12 to 19. During this time, the international connections will be mainly through the AAG and some on-land routes.
There are three Internet service providers in Vietnam using the pan-Asia submarine cable route, including Viettel, FPT and CMC. Viettel is the most affected. The operator said it had temporarily switched traffic from the
pan-Asia cable to the AAG to maintain the quality of the connection.
This carrier will add a total of 160 Gbit/s traffic to backup routes through China, AAG, and Hong Kong during the time of repair of the TGN-IA cable.
The remaining Internet providers mainly use the AAG and landlines so they will not be affected much by the TGN-IA incident.
The pan-Asia cable was put into operation in November 2009, connecting Singapore, Vietnam, the Philippines, Hong Kong, and Japan, with a total length of 6,800km.
Adapted from : http://english.vietnamnet.vn/fms/science-it, Thanh Nien Daily
ANALYSIS: Although Vietnamese Internet service providers are featured as the victims of yet another outage on a cable connected to Vietnam, it appears that there was little disruption to services in the country on this occasion as traffic was switched from TGN-IA to AAG by Viettel and other Vietnamese operators. AAG had just come back online after a planned outage in June.
60% of Vietnam's international traffic is on AAG. Of the remaining 40%, something like 75% is probably routed on TGN-IA of traffic. This article reveals that Viettel has 160 Gbit/s on TGN-IA, suggesting that Vietnam's total current demand for international bandwidth is in the region of 530 Gbit/s.
Vietnam already has three submarine cables landing on its shores: SEA-ME-WE-3, AAG, and TGN-IA, with AAE-1 and APG due to land before the end of this year. Five cables should offer sufficient redundancy for a market of this size but the preponderance of ultra-long haul consortium cables with long trunks and many branches increases the chances of a fault affecting Vietnam. Even privately-owned TGN-IA is a trunk and branch system and Symphony's proposal to build Thailand-Cambodia-Vietnam-Hong Kong will necessarily be of the same design. Vietnam really needs a "straight-shot" private cable to an Asian hub, such as Hong Kong or Singapore, but the business case for such a cable would be difficult to justify in the face of so much submarine capacity already, or soon to be, available on consortium trunk-and-branch systems.
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Julian Rawle, Author
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