Google has recently announced that its third private undersea internet cable will link Africa and Europe. One end is going to make landfall in Portugal. Instead of connecting Morocco, the cable will run all the way to the South African coast while having pit stops in other nations.
It is expected that the Portugal-South Africa portion of the Equino cable will be up and running by the year 2021. The connection is named after abolitionist and writer Olaudah Equiano, who was born in Nigeria.
The company has stated that they have invested around $47 billion in the last 3 years to bolster its technological infrastructure. Equiano happens to be the 14th cable and the third private international cable project by Google. Curie was the first and it was completed in April. The said cable runs between Los Angeles and Chile. The other cable is known to link France and the US. This is expected to be up and running by the coming year. This type of cables is very important to establish connectivity. That’s because they shuttle around 99% of the earth’s total data traffic.
Portuguese Economy Minister Pedro Siza Vieira praised highly the importance of the new cable.
He stated that:
“It is important to realize that in Portugal there is going to be a large collection and data transmission center that is provided by this very significant investment.”
He also said that this investment will to reinforce communications from all over Europe, from Portugal to Africa.
Google states that the Equiano cable which is going to be installed is completely different from the other cables. It is going to be installed by Alcatel Submarine Networks. The company wrote in a blog post:
“Equiano will be the first subsea cable to incorporate optical switching at the fiber-pair level, rather than the traditional approach of wavelength-level switching.” Google also stated that it will have around, “20 times more network capacity than the last cable built to serve this region.”
This is actually a very big project initiated by Google.