Facebook has started laying an undersea internet cable around the entire African continent. The project is called 2Africa. For example, the company wants to get the 1.3 billion inhabitants online. Facebook writes that in a blog post.
For project 2Africa Facebook collaborates with China Mobile, the South African MTN, Orange, Vodafone and local African telecom providers.
Almost the same circumference as the earth
“The primary purpose of 2Africa is to bring more connectivity to Africa. Currently the continent least connected in the world. Only a third of Africa’s population has access to the internet, ”writes Facebook.
With a length of 37,000 kilometers, the submarine cable is almost equal to the circumference of the earth (40,075 kilometers). The cable will connect 23 countries in Africa, Europe and the Middle East and triple the total African network capacity. It is not known how much the project will cost.
Broken submarine cables
“2Africa is a continuation of our continued efforts to expand global network infrastructure, ”said Facebook. The reason for the poor or limited internet in Africa is the broken submarine internet cables. In January, connections between African countries and Europe on the Atlantic Ocean broke down. Facebook uses aluminum instead of copper fiber for the new connection. That helps to increase network capacity.
Google is also working on an underwater cable, called Equiano. The cable would also connect Africa to Europe. In Africa, Google also uses balloons at a high altitude, which allows the company to offer 4G.
Facebook and Google do this for a reason, of course. Faster and cheaper internet means more people online, which in turn equates to earning more. If the two technology companies can break through on the African continent, this will immediately open many economic doors.