San Francisco: Facebook has committed more than $1 billion to develop a new sub-sea cable link to improve Internet connectivity in Africa. Africa is currently the least connected continent, with just over a quarter of its 1.3 billion people connected to the internet.
"Facebook has partnered with leading African and global operators to build `2Africa`, the most comprehensive subsea cable to serve the African continent and Middle East region.
A transformational cable, 2Africa is one of the largest subsea cable projects in the world and will interconnect 23 countries in Africa, the Middle East, and Europe.
"At 37,000 km long, 2Africa will be nearly equal to the circumference of the Earth. The project is impressive for more than length alone: It will provide nearly three times the total network capacity of all the subsea cables serving Africa today," Facebook said in a statement.
When completed, this new route will deliver much-needed internet capacity, redundancy, and reliability across Africa; supplement a rapidly increasing demand for capacity in the Middle East; and support further growth of 4G, 5G, and broadband access for hundreds of millions of people.
The first subsea cable system to seamlessly connect East and West Africa across a single open system, `2Africa` will enable new avenues of communication from coast to coast.
"In addition, we are developing a new crossing that links the Red Sea and the Mediterranean Sea, the first in this region in over a decade," said Facebook.