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Case Study: Pacific Island Telecom

Seattle Data Center

You probably expect consistent cell phone, television and internet service. However, for many Pacific islands, reliable high-speed communications is a relatively new phenomenon. Before the dozens of fiber cables that crisscross the Pacific Ocean were lain, telecommunications took circuitous routes via copper cable. Signals often traveled first to faraway communication hubs, distant locations in the wrong direction, like Australia, before rerouting to the mainland USA. Television programs were delivered on video tapes, carried by airplane and ships, airing a week or more after their original broadcast dates. Only the biggest sporting events were shown live because the necessary satellite connections were exorbitantly expensive.

It sounds like another era, but it was not too long ago. Today, transpacific communications travel thousands of miles in milliseconds. The importance of low-latency optical fiber connections cannot be understated.

To ensure low latency and resilience, a Pacific islands telecommunications company selected Colocation Northwest to house their IT infrastructure inside the Westin Building Exchange. This connection delivers landline, cell phone, television and internet. Inside the Westin Building Exchange, Colocation Northwest connects this provider to its television aggregator, telephone companies, the Seattle Internet Exchange and all the other cross-connects required for the exchange of data and voice with other carriers and networks. Through Colocation Northwest, all those data packets travel back and forth beneath the ocean to their island destination, where signals get distributed to their ultimate destinations. It is their connection to the world.

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