New Innovations

Super Fast Broadband Speed Achieved

As reported by the BBC, the fastest ever broadband speeds have been acheived.

Alcatel-Lucent and BT said speeds of 1.4 terabits per second were achieved during their joint test – enough to send 44 uncompressed HD films a second!

The test was conducted on a 410km (255-mile) link between the BT Tower in central London and Ipswich.

However, it may be many years before consumers notice any effect.

But the breakthrough is being seen as highly important for internet service providers (ISPs), as it means a greater amount of information can be sent through existing broadband infrastructure, reducing the need for costly upgrades.

Alcatel-Lucent told a BBC reporter that the demand for higher bandwidth grew by around 35% every year, making the need for more efficient ways to transfer data a massively pressing issue for ISPs, particularly with the growing popularity of data-heavy online services, such as film-streaming website Netflix.

Search engine giant, Google now offers super-fast broadband fibre to Kansas City

As reported on the BBC’s news website, Google has begun to connect US homes in Kansas City to super-fast broadband, offering residents speeds of up to 1Gbps (gigabit per second).
People living in the “fibrehood” area of Hanover Heights are among the first to use the service – customers are reporting speeds of about 700Mbps (megabits per second) but crucially, Google’s new service poses a significant challenge to established telco and cable companies which typically charge more money with much connections that suffer from latency issues.

Google says it hopes its package will persuade people to spend longer on the web and try out other new services, such as Google TV however, it will need to convince consumers that they would benefit from access to such fast speeds in return for much higher fees

"FTTA!" Fibre to the Artic

Looping fibre optics from Japan under the Arctic ice may well improve latency

Climate change could be bringing unforeseen benefits to the long haul fibre providers.

With the annual retreat of sea ice accelerating, a new innovation is bringing 21st-century communications to Asia via the fabled North- West Passage in the Arctic. In mid-August 2012, a ambitious construction project should start on the first submarine fibre-optic cables to cross the Arctic Ocean, providing “digital shortcuts” between London and Tokyo, Japan.

Whilst two cables are planned to be laid via the North-West Passage, a third cable is planned to be laid along the northern stretch of the Russian coast. It is said by the company that is carrying out the work that the longest of these links will become the world’s single longest single stretch of optical fibre.

Harsh weather conditions, including ice bergs will pose unique challenges to the cable laying teams. The ships that will be carrying out the sea laying of the cables themselves will have to “arctic maritime rated” to work in such arduous ice-ridden seas and with operations only possible for a few months of the year, time is not on the side of the project.

Yet there are advantages to laying cables in the Arctic, with the cable being virtually immune to anchors and trawlers. Furthermore, It is claimed that latency times between London and Tokyo will be significantly reduced from 230 milliseconds to 168 milliseconds. This time reduction will be of benefit to automated financial traders. Fibre repeaters are planned every 50 to 100 kilometres or so.


There are also plans to take a shortcut across the Boothia isthmus in the Canadian Arctic, which is a thin strip of land that connects the Boothia Peninsula to the mainland. This will link isolated Arctic communities via branches off the main cable, bringing the internet to some of the worlds most inaccessible places on earth!

One of the most important reasons for this project is that arctic cables will avoid failures in seas such as the Luzon strait near Taiwan, the Strait of Malacca between Indonesia and Malaysia, and the potentially “politically” unsettled Middle East. With a ship dragging its anchor in these areas breaking several cables, not only are repairs expensive but the whole of the internet can be disrupted.