We all know Liquid Telecom as a telecoms infrastructure company. That’s how most of us see the operator anyway. Lately, it has been putting a lot of work into value-added services as well.
Last month it announced it’s presence in the VoIP market at its”next Generation Launch”, something that saw it claim an even larger position in Zimbabwean enterprise services.
Just last week, it hosted an event to raise product awareness for its enterprise-focused Data Backup and Recovery solution, CrashPlan for Africa. This was a followup to the product launch that was held a couple of months ago.
There’s still work being done in infrastructure though. Last week, at the 3rd Africa Domain Name System Forum, in Nairobi, Liquid also announced that it had successfully migrated all its customers to the Anycast domain name system (DNS), guaranteeing near 100% server uptime at much faster speeds than any other ISP in Africa.
The Liquid Telcom Group’s Head of IP Strategy, Andrew Alston announced the switchover and the launch by Liquid Telecom of a public DNS that is the fastest in Africa. This migration to the Anycast DNS might have been announced last week, but there’s been work focused on this migration since last year.
There’s a pattern that is emerging in all of this – Liquid is striking a balance between the infrastructure and services, defining a clearer role for itself in value addition and not just focusing on fibre optic rollout.
That’s not to say that Liquid hasn’t been offering any services all along though. With Infrastructure being the core business, services weren’t as much of a focal point as they seem to be for the Pan African entity.
The VoIP service, for example, has been part of the Liquid Telecom enterprise offering for a while now and has managed to cultivate a significant following.
Services like VoIP, as well as a focus on anything that supports data, in this case, backup services like CrashPlan for Africa, which ride on top of network infrastructure are a bet on the future of technology.
While fibre rollout and infrastructure deployment might have been the differentiator in internet services, that won’t always be the case. Competition is going to be on the services. Maybe that same logic should be extended to the local infrastructure sharing debate that has also involved Econet, an operator affiliated to Liquid Telecom?