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Has Geopolitical Battle Between China and the U.S. Prompted Their Networks to Disconnect?

Let’s speak about geopolitical battle between China and the U.S. and the way it’s affecting the community. Has it brought on the 2 international locations to disconnect?

This battle has definitely affected us within the submarine cable trade.

Just a few years in the past, Group Telecom objected to the PLCN Submarine Cable Touchdown License software, partially on grounds of their possession construction—which had some Chinese language possession—and likewise due to the cable’s topology. 

SubOptic Myth 5.2

The cable was going to land in Hong Kong. As a way to get approval, that needed to be reconstituted.

Right here’s one other one—BtoBE—additionally touchdown in Hong Kong.

SubOptic Myth 5.3


HKA—a 3rd cable system eyeing Hong Kong—coming straight from the U.S. mainland.

SubOptic Myth 5.4

Once more, no. That’s not going to occur.

Political tensions have definitely affected the cable trade within the final 4 years, however have the U.S. and China’s networks disconnected?

I am going to have a look at just a few other ways of testing this fantasy.

Screen Shot 2023-05-31 at 1-44-42 PM

Direct Bodily Disconnect Take a look at

There’s definitely a disconnection of direct bodily networks between China and the U.S.

Whereas there are some previous cables that also join the 2 international locations, it is fairly clear that newer cables should not going to be allowed to take action within the close to future.

However that is not the entire image.

Oblique Bodily Disconnect Take a look at

Let’s additionally take a look at oblique bodily connection. To start with, is it even potential to get from the U.S. to China?

In fact, it’s. You could have to cease in Japan, or the Philippines, or Singapore and go from there onto Shanghai or Hong Kong, however there are quite a lot of choices for intra-Asian bodily networks. You simply must make an additional hop now.

In truth, there are 17 new intra-Asian cables which are presently within the works, and lots of extra that have not been introduced but.

So already, our second check has been busted.

I additionally wish to remind everybody that whereas we’re accustomed to working on the bodily layer, there are seven completely different layers of the community stack.

SubOptic Myth 5-6

Subsequent, we will speak about layer 4, layer 3, and layer 2.

Three Extra Disconnect Assessments

The video beneath walks by means of our exams of BGP, community presence, and layer 2/3 connectivity.


The Conclusion

To summarize the outcomes of our disconnect exams, there was a disruption of direct bodily connection. Nevertheless, oblique bodily connection has not been disconnected, and BGP, community presence, and layer 3 community hyperlinks are nonetheless rising.

Screen Shot 2023-05-31 at 1-54-35 PM

Whereas tensions not enable for brand new end-to-end submarine cable connections proper now, thus far, general community connectivity has been unchanged.

So we will name this fantasy busted.

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Alan Mauldin and I tackled this fantasy and 5 others throughout our presentation at SubOptic 2023. Obtain our slides for the complete breakdown.



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