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Underwater cable to provide internet connection to remote Australian island

Mainland Australians have been streaming movies and uploading videos with ease on their social media accounts, whereas their counterparts living in the Christmas Island have been struggling with their internet connection.

But after years of frustrations, the people living on this island, which is located 2,600 kilometres north-west of Perth in the Indian Ocean, will be able to experience high-speed and reliable internet.

According to a recent report, a new underwater cable linking Singapore to Perth promises to provide the island with fast internet that will allow it to keep in touch with the world.

A short offshoot, from the cable to Christmas Island, will connect it to a global undersea cabling network that makes up the sprawling, unseen infrastructure of the internet.

The company that built the new cable, which will be activated within weeks, said it would provide stability for the island’s 1,800 residents.

The company’s Project Director said that this will entail a much cheaper and virtually unlimited capacity for what they will need.

Moreover, it will take away the delay they have with the current satellite connection.

On one of Australia’s most remote territories, an internet connection is a vital link to the outside world, particularly for the island’s younger inhabitants.

There is no 3G mobile data available on Christmas Island, and mail can sometimes take longer than a week to arrive from the mainland.

A fourteen-year-old aspiring computer engineer, who is already proficient in Python, plans to learn C++ and JavaScript.

But, according to him, pursuing a career in software engineering, which he hopes to one day study at university, would be harder without a reliable connection.

For the island’s businesses, which range from restaurants to diving companies, a connection dropout can be more than an annoyance; it can mean a failed payment.

As reported, government agencies, businesses and residents on the island will all now have access to internet services that are as good as those available on the mainland.

Tele-health will be facilitated by improved video-conferencing and students will find it quicker and easier to access the internet for their studies.

Looking to the future development of the Christmas Island economy, improved connectivity will create opportunities for new and existing businesses seeking to deliver goods and services via the internet.

Internet services provided by undersea cable will also be more reliable as they will not be disrupted by the weather.

Undersea cables, however, can be damaged from time to time by fishing activity or the anchors of ships. But, it is otherwise expected that the cable for Christmas Island will last at least 25 years.


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