Top Stories of 2011 on Submarine Cable Networks

First of all, at this moment of the year ending,  Submarine Cable Networks hopes you all a fantastic holiday and a prosperous new year, happy and healthy.

In the year 2011 in our submarine cable industry, we experienced disasters, we were excited for the application of new technologies, we were happy there had been a surge of investment and there were new projects worldwide.  Taking a look back, I'd like to list some top stories of the year 2011.

 

1. Japan Earthquake and Tsunami cut multiple submarine cables

Multiple submarine cable systems, including APCN-2, EAC-C2C, Japan-US CN  PC-1, were cut after the magnitude-9.0 earthquake and tsunami occurred offshore Japan on March 11, 2011. It took almost half a year to repair all the cable cuts. Remember this day and the hard period, our brave heroes restored services shortly at the isolated Ajigaura cable landing station which is located close to the nuclear radiation source. This disaster called more concerns on the diversity and redundancy over submarine cable networks. 

2. 40G longhaul submarine cable networks alive

Reliance Globalcom completed an upgrade of its FNAL submarine network with Ciena's coherent 40G optical network solution, marking the first long haul 40G submarine network. APCN-2 followed later to make 40G wavelength alive. Most of the new cables were designed with 40G DWDM and even 100G upgradable.

3. Advantage of milliseconds faster counts

For a good sale of capacity, it depends on not only the high availability and good service, but also the advantage over latency. While the availability and services seem equal, the lower latency makes one outstanding, an advantage of milliseconds faster may count for a successful business. Now more than ever, low latency routes are in high-demand and critical for some financial transactions such as high frequent trading. Hibernia Atlantic made the Project Express outstanding by offering the fastest route across the Atlantic.  

4. China Mobile's showing up in the submarine cable networks

How do you peers think of the significance of China Mobile's participation in submarine cable networks? From my point of view, it was the most exciting news in this year. China Mobile, the Chinese giant on mobile services, the most profitable carrier worldwide, owning cash more than enough, has started to and is going to invest more and more in submarine cable networks. Several new projects have been benefited from China Mobile's participation.

5. Pacific Fiber and more submarine cables to connect Australia

A few submarine cables connect Australia as well as New Zealand. The international capacity price there keeps much higher than other regions. The Pacific Fibre cable is going to link Australia, New Zealand and the US. The ASC (Australia Singapore Cable) will connect Singapore and Australia. And a new Trans Tasman cable between New Zealand and Australia has been on the way.

6. Huge alternative terrestrial capacity linking Europe and Asia

For traffic between Europe and Asia, it has been long a good technical and much expected solution to run over terrestrial cables across Russia, including TEA, ERA, ERMC, etc.. But the capacity price over terrestrial cables was far beyond affordable. Let's look ahead, it may not be. The stakeholders have announced in 2011 to put more capacity available over these routes and the price has dropped to be attractive enough.

7. ASE, SJC and APG competition in Asia

There are increasing demands for international broadband communications and redundant networks. NTT led a consortium to build the ASE(Asia Submarine-cable Express). China Telecom, KDDI, Singtel and others formed a consortium to build the SJC(South-east Asia Japan Cable). China Unicom teamed up with NTT, KT, CHT and other members to build the APG(Asia Pacific Gateway).  All the three submarine cable systems were designed with 40 Gbps per wavelength. It is good for these cables to offer diversity in Asia. On the other hand, they competed for limited investment and will compete in future market. 

8. The launch of Submarine Cable Networks

This website of Submarine Cable Networks was launched early this year, designed and managed by Winston Qiu. Though in its preliminary running, the Submarine Cable Networks provides insightful and open information on the submarine cable industry and capacity market. Of course, much more to be improved. Sponsors are much appreciated for a better  Submarine Cable Networks.

9. Unveiling new player

Some were shocked and some cheered at Google's investment in submarine cable networks several years ago. Are you expecting a new partner like Google in submarine cable networks? Anyway, there is one coming, a new Internet giant is going to invest in submarine cable networks.   

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