Google Bandwidth Consortium - Linking US and Japan to Meet Increasing Bandwidth Demands

Google is currently working with five international companies to create a consortium to create a more scalable, affordable and easyly manageable network to meet the users' needs worldwide. One of the biggest challenges, that Google faces is staying ahead of broadband capacity needs, that’s over growing as the more people conduct online searches and interact with applications like Gmail, Google Earth and YouTube. […]

Google is currently working with five international companies to create a consortium to create a more scalable, affordable and easyly manageable network to meet the users' needs worldwide. One of the biggest challenges, that Google faces is staying ahead of broadband capacity needs, that’s over growing as the more people conduct online searches and interact with applications like Gmail, Google Earth and YouTube.

Google has announced, a consortium of six international companies announced they have executed agreements to build a high–bandwidth subsea fiber optic cable linking the United States and Japan.  The construction of the new Trans–Pacific infrastructure will cost an estimated US$300 million.

The new cable system — named Unity — will address broadband demand by providing much needed capacity to sustain the unprecedented growth in data and Internet traffic between Asia and the United States.  Unity is expected to initially increase Trans–Pacific lit cable capacity by about 20 percent, with the potential to add up to 7.68 Terabits per second (Tbps) of bandwidth across the Pacific.

According to the TeleGeography Global Bandwidth Report, 2007, Trans–Pacific bandwidth demand has grown at a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 63.7 percent between 2002 and 2007.  It is expected to continue to grow strongly from 2008 to 2013, with total demand for capacity doubling roughly every two years.

“The Unity cable system allows the members of the consortium to provide the increased capacity needed as more applications and services migrate online, giving users faster and more reliable connectivity,” said Unity spokesperson Jayne Stowell.

The Unity consortium is a joint effort by Bharti Airtel, Global Transit, Google, KDDI Corporation, Pacnet and SingTel.  The name Unity was chosen to signify a new type of consortium, born out of potentially competing systems, to emerge as a system within a system, offering ownership and management of individual fiber pairs.

This new 10,000 kilometer (km) Trans–Pacific cable will provide connectivity between Chikura, located off the coast near Tokyo, to Los Angeles and other West Coast network points of presence.  At Chikura, Unity will be seamlessly connected to other cable systems, further enhancing connectivity into Asia. 

The Unity consortium selected NEC Corporation and Tyco Telecommunications to construct and install the system during a signing ceremony held in Tokyo on February 23, 2008.  Construction will begin immediately, with initial capacity targeted to be available in the first quarter of 2010.

The new five fiber pair cable system can be expanded up to eight fiber pairs, with each fiber pair capable of carrying up to 960 Gigabits per second (Gbps).  By having a high fiber count, Unity is able to offer more capacity at lower unit costs.

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Google, Internet, Bandwidth, Consortium, Press, Announcement, Bharti, Airtel, Global Transit, KDDI, Pacnet, SingTel