By Telstra

First direct single cable connection between South East Asia and the US strengthens Telstra's leadership as a regional specialist carrier in Asia.

The opening of the 20,000 kilometre-long Asia America Gateway (AAG) submarine cable network marks a key milestone in Telstra's expansion in Asia. As the largest capacity owner in the consortium which commissioned the AAG submarine cable, Telstra will be able to offer a new low latency route from South East Asia to North America, providing its customers with greater access to Asian markets, further strengthening the reliability, diversity and routing options for its market leading services.

“This new cable further strengthens our ability to service the needs of our Asian customers as well as global multinational corporations reaching into and across the Asia Pacific region,” said Mr Drew Kelton, Managing Director of Telstra International. “As this region continues to drive growth for many multinationals, we see vast opportunities to leverage our core cable infrastructure and network assets to become a key partner of choice for our customers, and extend our leadership as an Asian specialist carrier with a global reach.”

AAG is the first direct single cable connection between South East Asia and the US with the submarine cable routing from Malaysia to the US via Hong Kong, the Philippines, Guam and Hawaii. The cable system also connects into Singapore, Thailand, Brunei and Vietnam. Crucially, it has been planned and designed specifically to avoid geographically hazardous areas around the volatile Pacific Rim earthquake zone, thereby enabling better and more reliable connectivity providing the opportunity for customers to reinforce business continuity strategies.

The AAG cable is interconnected with Telstra's other Australia – US cable networks, including its wholly owned Telstra Endeavour system and capacity on AJC and JUS, enabling Telstra's customers to benefit from increased reliability of telecommunications traffic between South East Asia to the US and greater diversity against traditional cable routes. Telstra will have a fibre pair in the AAG cable for its exclusive use between Hawaii and the West Coast of the US which effectively extends the reach of its Sydney-to-Hawaii Endeavour cable.

Telstra will also be able to provide a low latency direct path to Hong Kong and other key destinations connecting via Guam and its capacity on the Australia Japan Cable (AJC). In addition, Telstra's AAG capacity will further strengthen the reliability, diversity and routing options for Telstra's market leading services.  “Our AAG capacity will be integrated into the Telstra Global Next IPTM network reducing latency, while adding reliability and diversity to our market leading IP VPN, Global Internet and Global Ethernet services including EPL, EVPL and VPLS, enabling our customers to benefit from our robust core assets,” said Gina Nomellini, General Manager, Global Products, Telstra International. “The cable system will allow Telstra to further enhance its ability to provide the increasingly diverse and resilient services customers are demanding, especially from industries such as financial services, manufacturing and telecoms services.”

The AAG cable was built by a consortium of mainly Australian, Asian and American telecommunications organisations formed in April 2007.  The cable has an initial design capacity of 500 Gigabits per second, with a design capacity of 2 Terabits per second using field tested DWDM technology.