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Dubai, the most populous city in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), is also one of the fastest-growing in the whole world. Indeed, through the Dubai Future Foundation, the Dubai 10X initiative aims to propel Dubai into the future, positioning the city 10 years ahead of other global cities.
Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) is the exclusive provider of electricity and water services in Dubai. To reimagine the role of the utility sector, DEWA launched Digital DEWA in order to create a new digital future for the city. Indeed, Digital DEWA plays a leading role in the adoption of digital technologies across its four pillars — solar energy, energy storage, Artificial Intelligence (AI), and digital services — making it the world's first digital utility provider to use autonomous systems for renewable energy, storage, and digital services: as such, it's an enthusiastic adopter of nascent AI.
InfraX, the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) arm of Digital DEWA, focuses on connecting its customers with value added services from its data centers and the cloud. To this end, InfraX owns a secure, reliable, and independent super-fast fiber optics network that meets the smart needs of the future applications promised in the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
DEWA recently built a new staff campus in Jebel Ali Power Station, located southwest of Dubai, including two staff accommodation blocks and two multifunctional buildings that provide End to End (E2E) daily services for employees who live there. It was imperative to provide high-quality communication infrastructure across all these buildings and InfraX, as the body responsible for network planning and deployment, opted for high-quality Wi-Fi networks, characterized by enhanced performance in terms of bandwidth, latency, and network management.
Before this project began, accommodation networks in different DEWA staff campuses were operated and maintained separately, involving high maintenance costs, both in terms of time and money. These legacy networks provided a far from acceptable experience, complicating everything from simple file downloads to other mobile working tasks, including remote conferencing, which suffered from network latency, limited bandwidth, and occasional packet loss. Grasping the opportunities the new project presented, InfraX set up a single platform located in the Network Operations Center (NOC), centralizing the management of all accommodation networks. Going forward, this control platform will support further expansion of the company's accommodation networks in the future.
The cooperation between Huawei and InfraX provides a solution that meets a range of needs.
• All-wireless access through AirEngine Wi-Fi 6 Access Points (APs), offering ultra-bandwidth up to the Gbit/s level and forwarding latency as low as 10 ms. Support for a rich range of Internet of Things (IoT) standards will meet the needs of various intelligent services over the next five to 10 years.
• Proper two-layer campus network architecture. Access and core layer network architecture brings with it far easier Operations and Maintenance (O&M). And with latency vastly improved, the network is tailored for the future campus networks of tomorrow, in particular the need for massive terminal connections and ultrafast service access in the Wi-Fi 6 era. The use of far greener fixed switches also reduces power consumption and the physical footprint.
• A unified Managed Service Provider (MSP) cloud-managed operations platform, based on Huawei iMaster NCE. While three physical servers in a cluster provide ultra-high reliability, the platform smoothly supports expansion in the future. When additional devices need to come online, new licenses can simply be added, dramatically reducing both Capital Expenditure (CAPEX) and Operating Expenditure (OPEX).
By integrating big data, AI, and Software-Defined Networking (SDN) technologies, this solution offers one-stop automation and intelligent O&M, delivering high-quality wired and wireless services. It also enables automatic service provisioning, ensures an intelligent experience, and increases security protection. In short, it meets the performance levels that the wide variety of digital terminals and applications of tomorrow will require, today.
The solution is forward-looking networking infrastructure based on Wi-Fi 6 standards. It builds a smart living environment for DEWA's staff, with enhanced network features, from ultra-broadband and high user concurrency to low latency, providing a good user experience and therefore boosting employee satisfaction. And such infrastructure paves the road to diverse new digital services, so employees can live smarter lives.
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