AT&T and Japan's NTT have joined the Trans-Pacific Express consortium building a new undersea cable connecting the U.S. with Japan, China, Korea and other countries. The TPE will be one of the few instances in which we see AT&T saddle up next to Verizon Business in partnership--Verizon is a founding member of the TPE, along with China Telecom, Korea Telecom, China Unicom and Chunghwa Telecom.
For AT&T, the move is part of its effort to invest $1 billion internationally this year to expand its network capabilities. The reach to mainland China is one of the TPE's distinguishing features. Another is that the TPE partners recently said the cable will be activated ahead of schedule this July, in time for the 2008 Bejing Summer Olympics. The 11,000-mile cable should support 1.28 Tbps at the outset, but eventually speed up to 5.12 Tbps.
- TPE partners said just last week that the cable would be activated in July
- AT&T's $1 billion commitment came earlier this month