Google backs US$300m high-speed fibre bridge from US to Asia

12 Aug 2014

Google is backing the construction of a US$300m high-speed fibre broadband bridge, known simply as FASTER, which will cross the Pacific Ocean from the California coast and connect with Japan.

The transpacific cabling will join thousands of kilometres of existing cabling that make up the world’s underwater internet network, and according to The Next Web, the project is expected to be completed as soon as the second quarter of 2016.

The cabling’s initial capacity is expected to live up to its name, achieving a speed of 60Tbps, which will be routed from California to Chikura and Shima in Japan.

In comparison, 60Tbps is 10m times faster than the average person’s home modem connection.

However, FASTER is not expected to simply connect the two traditional tech powerhouses of the world, but rather create faster connections between the US and Asia, particularly China.

Google is officially managing the project, along with a host of Chinese telecom companies, including China Telecom Global and China Mobile International, among other Asian operators.

FASTER’s executive committee chairman Woohyong Choi said the intercontinental project will benefit not just Asia and the US, but the world.

“The FASTER cable system has the largest design capacity ever built on the transpacific route, which is one of the longest routes in the world. The agreement announced today will benefit all users of the global internet.”

Laying of underwater fibre cabling image via Shutterstock

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic