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Facebook and Google are building a huge Internet cable under the Pacific Ocean to China

Google is doubling down on its submarine cable investments in the Pacific ocean, this time with Facebook’s backing. The two tech companies announced last week (Oct. 12) that they are joining a consortium to build a new transpacific submarine cable system that will be ready in 2018.

Both companies are blocked in mainland China. But they're plowing money into an 8,000-mile ultrafast link between Los Angeles and Hong Kong, a special Chinese territory where their services can be viewed and that serves as a key network hub for Asia.
Rather than rely on telecom firms to provide the infrastructure to carry that information around the world, tech companies are increasingly doing it themselves.

Facebook  is already working with Microsoft to build a giant cable under the Atlantic. And the new Pacific link -- expected to begin operating in 2018 -- is the sixth submarine cable in which Google has taken a stake.

But this latest project -- the first to connect Los Angeles and Hong Kong -- will have more bandwidth than any other linking the Americas and Asia, according to Google.

The project, known as the Pacific Light Cable Network, will be the largest-capacity transpacific link when it’s operational, with a bandwidth of 120 terabits per second. It will stretch 12,800km between Manhattan Beach, in Los Angeles, California, and Tseung Kwan O, in Hong Kong. The planned cable has double the capacity of the current largest pipe under the Pacific, the FASTER cable system between US and Japan, which Google also invested in.

It will have enough to capacity to handle 80 million high-definition video conference calls between the continents at the same time.

Facebook and Google are working on the project with a little known Hong Kong-based company, Pacific Light Data Communication.

"It is certainly gratifying that global technology companies like Google and Facebook have become co-investors," said Wei Junkang, Pacific Light's chairman.

The Internet giants handle an enormous amount of data every day -- from videos posted by 1.7 billion Facebook ) users to documents stored in Google's servers

source: googleblog

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