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Facebook and Google Prepare the Indonesia-North America Underwater Internet Cable

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Facebook announced plans to roll out an underwater cable connecting Indonesia, Singapore and North America. The project will be undertaken in collaboration with Google and telecommunications companies in order to increase the capacity of internet connections between regions. In this construction, there are two submarine cables prepared. The two cables are named Echo and Bifrost. According to Facebook’s Vice President of Network Investments, Kevin Salvadori, the two cables will be the first underwater networks to pass the new route across the Java Sea. “They (these two cables) will increase the overall underwater (internet) capacity of the trans-Pacific by about 70 percent,” Salvadori told Reuters .

Salvadori said the cable will also be the first submarine cable that directly connects North America to several key locations in Indonesia. This cable is expected to increase connectivity in the Central and Eastern parts of Indonesia.

As summarized by KompasTekno from Gadgets 360 , Monday (29/3/2021), the Echo cable was made in collaboration between Google’s parent company, Alphabet, and Indonesian telecommunications company, XL Axiata. Echo making is planned to be completed in 2023. Meanwhile, Bifrost is the result of cooperation with Telin’s subsidiary, a subsidiary of Telkomsel, and Keppel from Singapore which is expected to be completed in 2024.

However, Salvadori did not mention the investment value for the project. This project also still requires approval from regulators. For Facebook, this project enters into an earlier investment in Indonesia, one of Facebook’s biggest markets. In 2020, Facebook said it would deploy 3,000 km of optical fiber to connect more than 1,000 network points in Bali, Java, Kalimantan and Sulawesi. When the installation is complete, the fiber cable will provide fast internet access services to more than 10 million people in Indonesia.

In addition, Facebook is also working with BaliTower, a telecommunications and infrastructure service provider in Indonesia to provide fast and affordable WiFi services. Facebook is also developing a technology called Terragraph, a wireless technology designed to meet the demand for high-speed internet access in urban and suburban environments.