Google has announced plans for yet another subsea cable. This one, called Apricot, will connect Singapore, Japan, Guam, the Philippines, Taiwan and Indonesia. The Apricot cable is expected to be ready for service in 2024.
Facebook has said it too is participating in the Apricot project. A group of as yet unnamed Asian operators are also reported to be involved.
Earlier this year, Google announced the Echo subsea cable (in service some time in 2023), which will connect the US, Singapore, Guam and Indonesia. Google says that the Echo and Apricot cables are complementary submarine systems that will offer benefits with multiple paths in and out of Asia, including unique routes through southern Asia, ensuring what it describes as “a significantly higher degree of resilience for Google Cloud and digital services”.
The company says that together the two cables will provide businesses and start-ups in Asia with lower latency, more bandwidth and increased resilience in their connectivity between Southeast Asia, North Asia and the United States.
Google’s other subsea cables, planned or under way, include Curie, between Chile and Los Angeles; Firmina between the US and Argentina; Equiano, between Portugal and South Africa; Grace Hopper, a cable connecting New York to London, UK and Bilbao, Spain; and Dunant between the US and France.
Including consortium cables, the company says it has investments in some 18 subsea cables, alongside its 27 cloud regions and 82 zones around the world.