Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL), in collaboration with five Asian telecom companies, will invest $300 million in a trans-Pacific undersea Internet cable network that will connect two coastal locations in Japan with major West Coast cities in the United States, according to media reports published Monday.
Urs Hölzle, Google’s senior vice president of infrastructure, said in a Google Plus post Monday that the company is “investing in FASTER, a new undersea cable...with a design capacity of 60 Tbps (terabits per second),” adding that the cable network will be 10 million times faster than a typical cable modem.
NEC Corporation (TYO:6701), a Japanese information technology company that will lay the cable, said in a statement released Monday that a consortium composed of China Mobile International, which is China Mobile Ltd.'s (NYSE:CHL) international unit; China Telecom Corporation Limited's (NYSE:CHA) China Telecom Global; Time Dotcom Bhd.'s (MK:TDC) Global Transit; KDDI Corp (TYO:9433); and Singapore Telecommunications Limited (SGX:Z74), are the Asian companies investing in the project.
“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,” Woohyong Choi, chairman of the FASTER executive committee of NEC said.
The statement also said that the construction of the cable network will begin immediately and that it would be ready by the second quarter of 2016.
“Along with our previous investments - UNITY in 2008 and SJC (South-East Asia Japan Cable) in 2011, FASTER will make the internet, well, faster and more reliable for our users in Asia,” Hölzle said.
UNITY, which is another trans-Pacific cable system between the U.S and Japan, has a capacity of 7.68 Tbps while SJC, which connects seven Asian countries, has a capacity of 28 Tbps, according to Submarine Cable Networks, an online information portal on the undersea cable industry.