Google's underwater internet cable activated

The $300 million trans-Pacific undersea cable backed by six companies, including Google, connecting Japan and the US has been activated. The cable connects Oregon with the Chiba and Mie prefectures in Japan with 9,000 km (5,600 miles) of wires. The cable has the capacity to deliver speeds of a staggering 60 terabits per second.

The "FASTER cable," as it was called connected the west coast covering Los Angeles, the San Francisco Bay Area, Portland and Seattle, among other locations. It could also improve internet connections in Japan's major cities possibly also in other Asian metropolises.

According to Google SVP Urs Hölzle, its 60Tbps total capacity is "more than any active subsea cable, and 10 million times faster than your cable modem."

Japanese company NEC Corporation started building FASTER back in 2014 and other than Google the project also had the backing of China Mobile International, China Telecom Global, Global Transit, KDDI and Singtel. Google completely owned one part of FASTER, though, particularly the cables connecting Japan and Taiwan, which had a smaller, but still impressive, capacity of 20 Tbps.

In 2014, Google announced that it was among several companies investing in the cable linking the US west coast to Japan.

Other companies making the investment were Global Transit, China Telecom Global, Singtel, China Mobile International, and KDDI.

Japan's NEC was appointed to build the cable which is expected to improve internet speeds throughout Asia, as also in west coast cities like San Francisco, Los Angeles and Seattle.

Google is also backing a similar project to build a cable between Florida and Brazil. which is expected to be completed by the end of the year. Also Microsoft  and Facebook recently announced a trans-atlantic cable between Virginia Beach and Bilbao in Spain.