Google-Led Consortium To Build 60Tbps Trans-Pacific Subsea Cable

Google and partners club together to build a cable connecting the US and Japan which will go live in 2016

Google and five other companies have formed a consortium to fund the laying of a new trans-pacific subsea cable connecting the US with two locations in Japan.

The partners include China Mobile International, China Telecom Global, Global Transit, KDDI and SingTel, who have dubbed the $300 million (£178m) cable ‘FASTER’.

Construction on FASTER will start immediately with NEC chosen as the system supplier, and the link is expected to become operational by the second quarter of 2016, offering speeds of 60Tbps.

Google subsea cable

FASTER will land in Chikura and Shima in Japan and will connect to other cables in Asia, extending the capacity to the rest of the continent. The other end will be connected to major hubs along the west coast of the US, including Los Angeles, San Francisco, Portland and Seattle.

Japan“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,” says Woohyong Choi, chairman of the FASTER executive committee. “The agreement announced today will benefit all users of the global Internet.”

The laying of the cable will allow the partners to send large amounts of data over private infrastructure, rather than a public network, allowing them to prioritise their own traffic.

FASTER is the latest move by Google to build out its own infrastructure, with the search giant launching fibre services in a number of US cities and plans to extend these service to up to 34 other locations.

BT recently diverted an unused subsea cable towards the Isles of Scilly as part of a project to bring superfast broadband to the islands. The cable had handled communications between the UK and Spain for 11 years until it was taken out of service in 2006.

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