In a very ambitious project, Google and Facebook have joined forces with the Pacific Light Cable Network to build an internet cable connection under the Pacific Ocean. The cable, which will sport over 12,800 kilometers of fiber, will connect Los Angeles to Hong Kong, making over 80 million video chats possible at one time when it is finished.
The fiber-optic cable will allow data transmission speeds of up to 120 terabytes per second. If completed successfully, this would easily be the fastest and highest-capacity transfer line that crosses the Pacific Ocean.
This is not the first time Google has gotten involved in undersea cable installations. It will actually be Google’s sixth underwater cable project. It is just another example of technology corporations becoming increasingly involved in the actual physical operations of the telecommunications networks worldwide. Facebook partnered with Microsoft to build a similar cable connection underneath the Atlantic Ocean. That cable joined the state of Virginia to Spain. While it may seem that these companies are trying to become independent by building and controlling their own networks, the reality is that each time one of these cable connections is built, it is also great for everyone involved. It increases times for the obvious areas, but it also helps surrounding regions because traffic is reduced on existing networks as the cable takes more of the load. This is beneficial for other organizations, because it speeds up transfers for everyone. More transfer speed and capacity means more customers, so working to optimize global telecommunications networks will greatly benefit all of the participants as well as many others in the long run.
The Pacific Light Cable Network says that the new cable under the Pacific should be installed and fully functional in 2018. The installation should greatly enhance performance for Facebook and Google Cloud services.