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Hot on the heels of our own reporting of cables in the South Pacific (or the lack thereof), in flies a report that at least two new undersea cables are being planned for the arctic. According to New Scientist, a pair of lengthy fiber optic wires will be laid through the Northwest Passage above North America, connecting Japan to the United Kingdom. Moreover, a third cable is planned along the Russian coastline, with the longest of these links to purportedly become "the world's longest single stretch of optical fiber." A number of outfits are on the list to help out, and when complete, the latency between Tokyo and London should be reduced between 168ms and 230ms. The cost for such luxury? An estimated $600 million to $1.5 billion for each line. In other words, totally worth it.

Engadget HD Podcast 291 - 03.20.2012