It is no surprise that laws in China with regards to internet access are strict. There have been reports that certain sites and pages are blocked in the country. How Facebook and Google responded to this was nothing short of epic and par for the course for the media giants.
It is a fact that both companies are blocked in mainland China. But Hong Kong is a special territory in the country where both company’s services may be viewed. Now, as far as they are concerned, Facebook and Google can just rely on telecom companies in the area to deliver the services.
But no, that is not how media moguls do. In an effort to deliver reliable and fast connections, the two companies teamed up to construct an 8,000-mile underwater cable that will span the distance between Los Angeles and the aforementioned Hong Kong territory. They felt that this connection will deliver unobstructed, speedy connections to the heart of what they call to be Asia’s “key network hub.”
We know that Facebook and Google serve up an unbelievably huge amount of data every single second. Facebook has 1.7 billion active users right now, all simultaneously posting high-quality videos, photos, and the occasional status and links. Google processes billions if not trillions of search queries every day, not to mention the load that their other services like Gmail, Docs, and Drive put on.
That is why the connection itself is capable of more bandwidth than any connection used to link Asia and the Americas today. It is so fast that it can handle as much as 80 million conference calls between said continents, all in high-definition, simultaneously!
This is not the first time that Facebook has taken part in a project building high-speed undersea cables. They have also partnered with Microsoft to work on cables that will link networks all across the Atlantic. Google, on the other hand, reports this as the sixth time they participated in such a project. However, this is still the very first one that directly links Los Angeles and Hong Kong.
A Hong Kong based company, Pacific Light Data Communication, is helping both companies accomplish the massive undertaking. The connection is expected to be in operation by as early as 2018.
Image Source: Wikimedia Commons