Google's New Undersea Cable Could Deliver Fastest Broadband

Aug 13, 2014

Google is working with five other companies to deliver incredibly fast Internet speeds by building a cable under the Pacific Ocean.

The $300 million (£179 million) cable, named "Faster," will connect the US with Japan and deliver speeds of 60Tb per second – equivalent to 2,000 uncompressed HD films.

"Faster" is being developed by the search engine giant in co-operation with the Asian telecommunication firms China Mobile, China Telcom, Global Transit, KDDI and Sing Tel, and should be completed by 2016.

Woohyong Choi, chairman of the consortium's executive committee said that the cable will form an important part of the global Internet infrastructure.

"Faster is one of a few hundred submarine telecommunications cables connecting various parts of the world. The Faster cable system has the largest design capacity ever built on the trans-Pacific route, which is one of the longest routes in the world."

The underwater cable will connect major hubs on the west coast of the United States, including Los Angeles, San Francisco, Portland and Seattle, with Chikura and Shima in Japan.

Submarine cables are a vital part of the web's infrastructure and when damaged can cause severe disruption to global communication. In 2008 the severing of underwater cables near Alexandria, Egypt brought to a halt 65 per cent of India's Internet traffic.

The "Faster" cable will offer Internet speeds that surpass anything else being experienced across the globe. Google provides speeds of 1Gbps in some US cities such as Austin, Texas through its Fiber service. Asian Internet speeds are generally faster and South Korea wants citizens to have 1Gbps connections by 2017.

In the UK, however, we are lagging behind somewhat: the fastest widely-available broadband speed currently clocks up just 152mbps.

Author: Barclay Ballard
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