Global Consortium to Construct New Cable System Linking US and Japan to Meet Increasing Bandwidth Demands
Construction underway to build 10,000 km linear cable system with a capacity of up to 7.68 Tbps to enhance Trans-Pacific connectivity
TOKYO, Japan (February 26, 2008) – 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.
Unity is an international consortium that is developing a 10,000 km undersea cable system connecting Japan and the United States. The system will provide much needed capacity to sustain the increased growth in data and Internet traffic between Asia and the United States. Members of the consortium include Bharti Airtel, Global Transit, Google, KDDI, Pacnet and SingTel. NEC Corporation and Tyco Telecommunications are the suppliers for the Unity project, which is scheduled to go live in the first quarter of 2010.
About Bharti Airtel
Bharti Airtel Limited, is India’s leading integrated telecom services provider with an aggregate of 60 million customers. Bharti Airtel is structured into three strategic business units – Mobile services (which provides services using GSM technology), Telemedia services (which provides broadband & telephone services in 94 cities) and Enterprise services (which provides end-to-end telecom solutions to corporate customers and long distance services to Carriers). Bharti Airtel has been rated among the best performing companies in the world in the BusinessWeek IT 100 list for 2007.
About Global Transit
Global Transit operates the fastest growing IP Transit network in South Asia. The company’s content rich network provides high availability services to leading service providers and enterprises across the region. Global Transit is headquartered in Kuala Lumpur and is an affiliate of The AIMS Asia Group, a pan-asian operator of network neutral data centres.
Google’s innovative search technologies connect millions of people around the world with information every day. Founded in 1998 by Stanford Ph.D. students Larry Page and Sergey Brin, Google today is a top web property in all major global markets. Google’s targeted advertising program provides businesses of all sizes with measurable results, while enhancing the overall web experience for users. Google is headquartered in Silicon Valley with offices throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia.
KDDI is the only Japanese information and communications company that comprehensively provides all communications services, from fixed to mobile. KDDI is aggressively working towards realization of the coming Ubiquitous Network Society through its ability to develop leading-edge fixed and mobile communications networks, and services to support them, and through the ability to carry out technical R&D; at a level unsurpassed anywhere.
Pacnet, a leading telecom services provider, was born from the operational merger of Asia Netcom and Pacific Internet. Pacnet owns and operates EAC-C2C, Asia’s largest privately-owned submarine cable network at 36,800 km with design capacity of 10.24 Tbps. Offering a comprehensive portfolio of industry leading IP-based solutions for carriers, large enterprises and SMEs. Pacnet is headquartered in Hong Kong and Singapore with offices in all key markets in Asia and worldwide.
SingTel is Asia’s leading communications group providing a portfolio of services including voice and data services over fixed, wireless and Internet platforms. It has a network of 37 offices in 19 countries and territories throughout Asia Pacific, Europe and the United States. Together with its regional partners, SingTel is Asia’s largest multi-market mobile operator, serving over 172 million mobile customers in eight markets.
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FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTSThis press release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties, including statements relating to expected increases in capable capacity, the increase in bandwidth resulting from Unity’s new cable system, and the growth of the bandwidth demand. Actual results may differ materially from the results predicted. The potential risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ include, among others, risks related to the difficulty of predicting capacity requirements, rapid technological changes and the introduction of new products and technologies that make it difficult to accurately forecast telecommunications traffic growth, the impact of increasing competition, regulatory uncertainty and the impact of changes in existing regulations, and Unity’s ability to complete the construction of the cable system in the anticipated time frame due to, among other things, extensive construction lead times, the limited number of major undersea cable supply and construction companies, the limited number of qualified and experienced undersea cable personnel and significant capital requirements. All information provided in this release is as of February 26, 2008, and neither Unity nor any other company referenced herein undertakes any duty to update this information.