Fiber optics are the future of data transfer. But in Germany, the future's already here: Deutsche Telekom has a working 512Gbps optical fiber that's working in the real world. I want it.


Yes, that's a single optical fiber. It's capable of hitting transmission speeds of 512Gbps in test conditions, but real life takes that down to a usable limit of 400Gbps. No matter: when a single strand of optical fiber can stream what is the same as 77 350,000 CDs of music being played at the same time, I won't quibble over that difference.

Most impressive is the fact that this isn't a laboratory test piece; this is being used over a 500 mile stretch, between Berlin and Hanover, alongside the company's usual 10Gbps line. Deutsche Telekom explains that, if they rolled this out using their usual 48-channel optical fibers, they could achieve a throughput of 24.6Tbps on a cable thinner than a human hair. Want. Want, want, want. [Deutsche Telekom via GigaOm; Image: kainet]