The Underwater Internet

Fiber-Optic Cables at the Bottom of the Seas are Multiplying

The internet is not some invisible highway in the clouds—data travels mostly via an earthbound system. And the vast majority of global communications pass through just 200 fiber-optic cable systems on the floors of the world's oceans. But with internet traffic projected to increase threefold from 2016 to 2021, these systems' capacities are reaching their limits. So giants like Google, Facebook and Amazon—leery of network slowdowns that could hurt business—are partnering with other organizations to back more than a dozen transoceanic cable-laying projects.
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