Internet services in China will not be back to normal until mid-January after being disrupted by a powerful earthquake off Taiwan, AP reported, citing state media. Internet and telephone services in China and many parts of Asia were cut by a magnitude 6.7 earthquake off the Taiwanese town of Hengchun on December 26, leaving telecommunications companies scrambling to repair damaged undersea cables and switch services to satellites and undamaged cables. An unidentified China Telecom official told state media that internet service would be back to normal on January 15. China Telecom said that by rerouting traffic through satellite transmissions and landline cables connecting China and Europe, about 70% of overseas internet connections had been reconnected. But the official said the link to North America would not be significantly improved until the undersea cables were repaired.
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