For many internet giants, undersea fiber optic cables are a lifeline. In some cases, it's the difference between delivering fast services overseas and watching people give up in frustration. Microsoft knows this all too well, it seems, as it just poured money into three subsea fiber projects (Aqua Comms, Hibernia and New Cross Pacific Cable Network) that should speed up connections to Asia-Pacific and Europe. The Redmond crew sees this as a small investment that could pay off big in the future. As it explains, online products like the Azure computing platform and Office 365 are booming -- it only makes sense to have those moneymakers running as smoothly as possible. This isn't really an altruistic gesture, then, but it could go a long way toward improving your internet access as a whole.
[Image credit: US Pacific Fleet, Flickr]