Google is building a new data center (red icon) in the Tseung Kwan O Industrial Estate in Kowloon, next to a golf course.
Google is building a new data center in Hong Kong worth $300 million to better handle search traffic in the region and help mitigate its clash with mainland China. According to a statement on the official micro-site dedicated to Google’s server strides, they are “building this data center to make sure that our users in Hong Kong and across Asia have the fastest and most reliable access possible to all of Google’s services, so they can do just that.”
The facility will be located in the Tseung Kwan O Industrial Estate in Kowloon, where the company bought 2.7 hectares of land in September 2011. Google plans to start bringing the new data center online by early 2013 and has confirmed it will employ 25 full-time Googlers. A number of part and full-time contractors will be involved with the site as well, such as computer technicians, electrical and mechanical engineers and catering and security staff.
It became clear last year that Google would be needing a new data center as they began redirecting users visiting Google.cn to Google.com.hk, where they offer uncensored search in simplified Chinese. “Due to the increased load on our Hong Kong servers and the complicated nature of these changes, users may see some slowdown in service or find some products temporarily inaccessible as we switch everything over”, Google warned in a blog post back in 2010.
The search behemoth also has plans to build data centers in Singapore and Taiwan. Chinese authorities won’t like this. Google’s trouble in China culminated a year ago when the search company had declared it would offer uncensored results to users in Hong Kong via the google.com.hk site while continuing to honor its self-imposed censorship in mainland China. However, Google on January 12, 2010 announced it was “no longer willing to continue censoring”, the move which had allowed domestic search engine Baidu to increase its search dominance of the Chinese market.