Keeping with it’s own current investment trends, Google is considering a multi-million dollar investment in a brand new Trans-Pacific cable. The move does not come as a surprise as more and more business giants opt to use private networks in favor of public access. From private comes profit, with ground-level investments like this, investors benefit from eliminating the middle-man and the unnecessary costs that come with them. Most of Google’s bandwidth is privatized for it’s “B4” network responsible for shuttling emails and YouTube videos. This 3 year old system now carries more traffic than Google’s public network responsible for getting search results and You Tube Videos to the internet. A move like this should not come as a surprise, but rather be expected with internal demands now exceeding external demands.
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A little insight for those who don’t know, the “internet” is literally a massive web of cables physically connected around the world. There’s no magic technology here, what started with existing phone lines, has grown capacity by literally upgrading existing wires with cable and fiber-optics that run right down beaches into the great oceans. These cables are simply laid across the bottom of the abyss until they reach the coast on the other side of the world, where they once again run up the beach connecting the continents. Obviously, better technology and more cables being run has brought capacity to where it is today. A look at global maps depicting where the cables are run, one can see less-developed nations and continents are not as well served as countries like the United States and the European continent.
This brings another element of Google’s proposed cable, increasing capacity between the Continental United States and Asia. Not only is Asia home to most of the world’s most valuable technology companies, it’s also home to a bulk of the world’s population. There’s no denying China’s growth in the world’s economy and with this comes need and demand for dramatically more bandwidth to do commerce with the rest of the world.
The past year has seen Google expand from it’s mastery of the web to making huge investments in hardware outside of their normal business model. Key acquisitions have been companies like Nest and most recently Dropcam as Google begins buying their own infrastructure for systems they will implement in the future. Another huge announcement was Google’s plans to fund a satellite-based system to provide anyone in the world internet access. Today’s announcement is most likely just one of many to come as Google re-invests it’s profits today to ensure even larger dividends in the not-so-distant future.