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Chairpersons Report - Wireless.doc


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									             Arusha Node Marie Internet Society
            12th Annual General Meeting - 6th April 2006
                            Chairman’s Report
Fellow members of the Management Steering committee, Members of the Arusha
Node Marie Society, AFAM Staff.

1.    Introduction
      I would like to again welcome you to this 12th Annual General Meeting of
      Arusha Node Marie Internet Society.

      Mine is but a brief report on the developments that have taken place in our
      society since our last meeting in April last year. As has always being the case
      I encourage you to ask questions, put forward your views and ideas and feed
      back on the functions of our society.

      Our objectives as non-profitable society and our mission statement are clearly
      spelt out in our constitution which is available on our website. Indeed all of
      you are encouraged to visit our website and that of EOL on regular basis to get
      the full benefit of what Arusha Node Marie has to offer.

2.    Steering Committee
      The Management Steering Committee oversees all the ANM administrative
      and technical affairs.

      Some of the current MSC members have already been introduced. You will
      have noted that present here today are only five members. One is away on
      business trip and the other two Patrick Kinyanjui went for further studies and
      Aggrey Nkondola felt that he could not make himself available for MSC
      activities because he was too busy with his official duties in E.A.C.
      Secretariat. Because of this the Management Steering Committee has
      appointed two replacements in accordance with section 5.6 of our constitution.
      These appointments have to be ratified by this meeting.

      We have had regular meetings on the average of six weeks interval. Some of
      the committee members worked in sub-committees and faithfully attended
      those meetings all with the purpose of making the ANM a better society and
      achieving its objectives.

      I wish to thank all the MSC members for their effort and dedication this past
      year. I would also like to thank members of Elimu On Line sub-committee of
      the MSC which has worked tirelessly in making sure that our philanthropic
      activities are maintained. One of the members of this sub-committee will give
      you more details of the EOL activities and their achievements.
3.     Major Highlights of 2005/06

       I’m glad to report that the year 2005 has been a successful year for Arusha
       Node Marie when compared to last year.

       There has been:
        A 7% increase of ANM membership base, a complete reverse of year 2004
        Increase of service revenue by 9.2% relative to year 2004
        Expansion of ANM network coverage to KIA, Usa River and surrounding
        Continued expansion of DSL cable service to Sakina and Nanenane areas.
        Better uptimes for remote wireless cells despite frequent power cuts.
        Use of a new service protocol – PPPoE (Point to Point Protocol over
          Ethernet) for shaping clients traffic and easy way of monitoring and
          managing traffic.

       Other developments have included:
        Creation of a client database with all necessary information including
          clients name, registration code, location, client premises equipment, etc.
          This has made it possible for us to do what we are best known for better
          and that is a good customer care.
        Creation of a PBX for Voice over IP (VoIP) calls.

       On the negative side we lost two DSLAM’s due to power problems.
       We have also been informed that our technical people have not been able to
       utilise one of our new mail server. They are still working to establish the
       reasons for this failure.

4.     Membership Status and Trends
       At the close of the year 2005 we had a total number of 219 members a net gain
       of 54 members over the 2004 figure. Indeed this is encouraging when we
       compare to the 2004 net loss of one.

Arusha Node Marie                                                            Page 2 of 6
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       Table 1 – Membership Trend
                                                       Mem bership by Year







                               1999        2000            2001      2002           2003           2004    2005

            Total Members       476           570          676        714           795              765   819
            Additions           208           201          215        154           179              190   190
            Left                76            102          109        116           133              191   136
            Net Gain            132           99           106        38             46              -1     54

       The loss of ANM membership has been attributed to members changing from
       our dialup connection to dedicated wireless, cable or VSAT services and to a
       less extent members been disconnected for failing to pay their bills.

       Generally, there has been a switch of membership to cable connectivity. This
       is a result of our DSL expansion project that began in 2004. Wireless
       connections retained their share 18% while dialup connection dropped by
       11%, an indication that dialup is phasing out.

       Table 2 – Percent of Connection by Type – 1999 to 2005
                                      % of Subscribers per Service

             80%                                                                           Cell Host
             70%                                                                           EOL
             60%                                                                           Wireless
             50%                                                                           Cable
             40%                                                                           Dial-Up
                        1999   2000    2001         2002    2003   2004      2005

       It is worth mentioning that cable connections represent about 60% of our

Arusha Node Marie                                                                               Page 3 of 6
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       I would like to point out that our surveys, interviews have shown that a good
       percentage of our new members have been referred by the satisfied clients
       who have enjoyed the reliable services provided by ANM through our
       technical members AFAM. For this we would like to pet AFAM on their back
       and encourage them to keep up the good work. It goes without saying that
       reliable services and maintaining good reputation of the client is the main key
       to success in recruiting and maintaining of membership.

5.     Technical Status

        In 2005 ANM spent most of its resources continuing projects that were
       initiated in 2004. A lot of focus was on the expansion of cable service range
       via DSL and improving the wireless backbone links. Time was also spent on
       improving performance of the existing servers especially the bandwidth
       manager, mail server and web servers.

       Some new developments on the servers’ side include a radius server for
       authenticating clients’ connections and a Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP)
       server for both local and international calls.

       Power has continued to be the leading cause of failures of ANM network
       contributing to 52% of the downtime.

       ANM maintained its secondary link to the Internet via TTCL to be used as a
       backup for mail and name resolution.

       DATEL, our primary upstream provider, has continued to offer ANM a
       commendable service with an uptime record of 99.74%.

       2005 saw more members upgrading their bandwidth levels that necessitated
       ANM to upgrade its bandwidth with DATEL to 4,736 Kbps downstream and
       1,408 Kbps upstream.

       Internet usage has increased and users today do not just need internet for
       business only. Users need it for entertainment and that is where P2P
       application programs, such as music and file sharing programs. With a P2P
       program a ANM user can download music or movies from another end user
       computer on the other side of the globe an vis-a-vis. While we have been
       limiting P2P traffic during peak hours, it has not been possible to limit a big
       percentage of the traffic as the programs keep on evolving, that is, getting
       intelligent in bypassing bandwidth rules.

       To cope up with the above dynamics we are compelled to frequently upgrade
       the bandwidth manager.

       Wireless network
       In 2005 one more backbone link (AICC – ESAMI) was upgraded to use Direct
       Sequence Spread Spectrum (DSSS) technology that reliably delivers 10 Mbps
       up to 50 Km and has proved to be very ideal for backbone links with huge

Arusha Node Marie                                                             Page 4 of 6
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       traffic and signal interference. Two more backbone links remain to be
       upgraded, that is, Themi – Duluti and AICC – Meru Plaza links with the latter
       one most likely to be upgraded by a fibre optic cable directly from the AICC.

       This year we also established a new wireless cell at KIA capable of serving
       potential clients at Mererani, Sakila, Kikatiti and Boma Ng’ombe. The cell
       picks its signal directly from ESAMI. Currently three members are connected
       to the cell. With some marketing, we expect to see more users especially those
       located at the KIA terminal.

       Cable network
       As indicated earlier 58% of ANM clients are on cable network and this proves
       how vital the cable service is to ANM. In 2005 we added two more DSL cells
       at Sakina area and NaneNane area to make a total of 8 DSL cells.

       With wider DSL coverage in town centre we are now in a position to merge
       many small cells hence making it easier to manage with less financial/
       equipment commitment.

       In 2006 we envisage to roll out DSL service in TFA Shopping Centre which
       has shown significant clientele growth and we owe it to them to improve the
       service. If finances allow we will plan to have fibre link to Astab and Meru
       Plaza cells.

       In 2005 we began using pressure - treated poles from Njombe for our cable
       network. These are estimated to have a life span of 20 years as opposed to the
       2 years we got from the locally obtained.

       As it will be noted in the downtime reports, electrical power related problems
       contribute approximately 51% to the cable network down time. DSL has really
       mitigated power problems that are experienced in the hub/switch network but
       on the other hand when a single DSL cell goes down, you can expect at least
       20 clients to be cut off from the internet.

       ANM lost two DSLAM’s at Golden Rose and at PPF Oloirien cells this year
       due to electrical short circuiting with TANESCO’s 11KV power lines. Since
       then we have taken measures to avoid a repeat of this.

Arusha Node Marie                                                             Page 5 of 6
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Section 6:     Future Prospects & Conclusions

       A. Future Prospects

       Expansion of DSL
       We have DSL service in almost all parts of the town. We only anticipate
       adding two more DSL cells – at Ilboru and Meru Plaza. The biggest task
       would be to merge small cells and move members on hub/switch network to
       DSL network.

       Expansion of Cable Backbone links
       It is evident now that cable backbone links provide superior performance to
       wireless links in terms of speeds and service reliability. Henceforth, our efforts
       to connect all wireless cells within the town centre directly to AICC, by either
       fibre or copper cable, will run parallel to the deployment of DSL. Our primary
       focus in 2006 is on the following cells: Meru Plaza and Golden Rose

       Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP)
       VoIP (voice over IP - that is, voice delivered using the Internet Protocol) is a
       term used in IP telephony for a set of facilities for managing the delivery of
       voice information using the Internet Protocol (IP).

       Tanzania Communication Regulation Authority (TCRA Licencing)
       We have prepared and submitted application documents to be considered for
       the new TCRA license.

       The new licence will allow us to offer additional services like VoIP and TV
       over IP which are not allowed under the existing license.

Arusha Node Marie                                                                Page 6 of 6
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