Google is collaborating with other tech companies to construct a new undersea, ultra high-capacity cable network between Los Angeles, USA and Hong Kong, it announced on Wednesday.

The 12,800km Pacific Light Cable Network (PLCN) will have a capacity of 120 terabits per second. A terabit represents 125 gigabytes.

Photo: HKFP remix.

When it launches in 2018, it will be the highest-capacity data route over the Pacific – enough bandwidth for Hong Kongers to stream 80 million simultaneous HD video conference calls with Los Angeles.

The project will be the search giant’s sixth submarine cable. It is being undertaken in partnership with Facebook, Pacific Light Data Communication and TE SubCom.

Photo: Google.

Last May, Microsoft and Facebook joined forces to build a new 4,100 mile cable connecting Virginia, USA to Spain.

Director of Google Networking Infrastructure Brian Quigley said the network will bring better speeds and security to internet users in Asia: “Google’s mission is to connect people to the world’s information by providing fast and reliable infrastructure. From data centres to cables under the sea, we’re dedicated to building infrastructure that reaches more people than ever before.”

“Nei Hou, Hong Kong! We can’t wait to link up with you!” he wrote in a blog post on Wednesday.

Correction 15:30: An earlier version of this article referred to terabytes as opposed to terabits. 

Tom Grundy

Tom is the editor-in-chief and founder of Hong Kong Free Press. He has a BA in Communications and New Media from Leeds University and an MA in Journalism from the University of Hong Kong. He has contributed to the BBC, Euronews, Al-Jazeera and others.