Google-Backed Undersea Cable to Link Singapore, Australia

Google announced Wednesday that it's investing in a new subsea cable system that will run between Australia and Asia.

As well as Google and Telstra, the consortium includes AARNet, Indosat Ooredoo, Singtel and SubPartners, and will build the new Indigo cable system to connect Singapore, Indonesia and Australia.

A large consortium of heavy hitters including Telstra, Singtel and Google has taken over the planned construction of a subsea cable to be built between Perth and Singapore.

Brisbane-based SubPartners will offer Superloop strategic assets including the ownership of global submarine cable capacity as a member of the Indigo consortium.

For Singtel, the cable connects its Australian operator Optus with its other operations in southeast Asia, while AARnet, Australia's research and education network, will benefit from improved connections with the region.

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With two fibre pairs, Indigo will use coherent technology that modulates the laser light amplitude as well as its phase, and transmits over multiple polarisations.

"The delivery of secure, reliable and high-speed connectivity between Singapore and Sydney has been the core focus of SubPartners since its inception", said Bevan Slattery, CEO of SubPartners.

"With Internet data consumption growing by 70 per cent in Asia previous year alone these sorts of investments in worldwide networks are critical for meeting the needs of connected consumers and businesses", Telstra group managing director of global services and worldwide, David Burns, said in a statement. Alcatel Submarine Networks will construct the cable, which is expected to be completed by mid-2019. "This cable system complements our global connectivity that links Asia, the US, Europe, Australia and the Middle East".

He also said the acquisition of SubPartners has significant strategic benefits for the Superloop Group by providing the basis for connectivity between existing metropolitan networks and creating a broad inter-connected Pan-Asian network. "Once the cables are complete, we will have even more capacity to meet growing customer demand across the region". If approved, Slattery's holding in Superloop will be 29.1 percent; if not, he will be paid US$2 million.

Indigo will be the seventh submarine cable in which Google has invested in.

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