Apple plans to build a mammoth data center in Hong Kong SAR with construction slated to begin early next year, 9to5Mac has reported.
The move, which follows Google's data center plans in the same city, puts Apple close to China, one of its biggest markets, without actually having to house its servers on the mainland. Hong Kong, while controlled by China, is administratively separate from the mainland, which should keep data more secure and out of reach from the Chinese government.
The data center is planned for Hong Kong's New Territories, a region described as rural and less densely populated. However, as VentureBeat notes, the region's population density is more than double New York City.
A bidding contractor employee told 9to5Mac Apple's planned data center scale is unprecedented for his business. If that's true, Apple's facility is likely to be bigger than Google's $300 million data center located on nearly 7 acres of land in Hong Kong's Tseung Kwan O Industrial Estate in Kowloon. Google has said it expects the data center to be online by early next year.
Details about Apple's Asian data center are few and far between. It's not known, for example, if Apple will use renewable energy sources to provide power to a portion of the facility as it's done for its data centers in Maiden, North Carolina and Prineville, Ore.
Photo: Flickr user Ed Coyle Photography, CC 2.0
This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com