updated 04:09 pm EDT, Mon August 11, 2014
Extra undersea cable to provide 60Tbps of Trans-Pacific bandwidth
Google has backed a project to install a Trans-Pacific cable system between major West Coast cities in the United States with two locations in Japan. The $300 million project, optimistically called the Faster cable network, will hopefully provide a speed boost for Internet connections, with construction starting now with a view to being "ready for service" by mid-2016.
The connection has been designed to have an initial capacity of 60Tbps, or 100Gbps for each of 100 wavelengths over six fiber-pairs, and will in theory include "seamless connectivity" to neighboring cable systems, extending capacity beyond Japan and into Asia. By comparison, TechCrunch reports the Southeast Asia-Japan Cable cost $400 million to build, funded in part by Google, went live last year and is able to handle up to 28Tbps.
Aside from Google, five other companies are helping fund and manage the project. China Mobile International, China Telecom Global, Global Transit, KDDI, and SingTel are all involved, while NEC will be the system supplier. Faster executive committee chairman Woohyong Choi advises "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 agreement announced today will benefit all users of the global Internet."