First published 20 January, 1997
The Internet prepared to go supernova as 90 telcos signed an agreement in Singapore to build the world's longest, highest-capacity submarine fibre optic cable network. The 38,000km Sea-Me-We 3 network will link Europe, Africa, Asia and Australia and have a capacity of 10Gbits for each of its twin cables.
BT, Deutsche Telekom, Singapore Telecommunications (SingTel), Telekom Malaysia and China Telecom are among the 90 companies sponsoring the $1.3 billion pipe which will open for commercial traffic by the end of next year, allowing up to 120,000 simultaneous telephone calls, according to SingTel.
The scheme follows the $1.5 billion Nynex-led FLAG fibre optic cable, linking Europe, the Middle East and Asia, which will go into service this September. The 27,400km FLAG line is backed by over 40 carriers.