“The design of our new map was inspired by antique maps and star charts, and alludes to the historic connection between submarine cables and cartography.”
Submarine Cable Map
FJP: Slate’s Will Oremus fills in some details.
At first glance, the lines appear to mirror long-proven global trade routes, with major hubs in global capitals like New York, Amsterdam, and Mumbai. But Mauldin notes that there have been no new cables across the Atlantic since 2003. The growth today is in historically under-served regions like Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America. Nor are all the hubs located in the big cities you’d expect. That phalanx of cables converging on Brazil, for instance, lands not in Sao Paolo or Rio de Janeiro but Fortaleza, simply because it’s an easier hop from the Northern Hemisphere. Another surprisingly popular destination is Djibouti, whose appeal becomes more clear when you consider the relative business-friendliness of its neighbors at the mouth of the Red Sea: Somalia, Eritrea, Yemen.