updated 12:39 am EDT, Wed September 19, 2012
Full completion in Apple's key market expected by 2015
According to reports, Apple's next giant data center will be constructed in Hong Kong, China. Apple has recently selected a location in the New Territories area of Hong Kong. Construction is expected to begin in the first quarter of 2013, and it should take over a year for operations to commence at the new center. Full operation is planned by 2015. Apple is said to be selecting bids from local and international construction companies for the buildout of the facility.
The region is generally chosen for Chinese data centers because of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region's legal structure giving the area more legal independence from the mainland, reports 9to5Mac. Locating a data center on the mainland would give the Chinese government authority over the data stored at the center, allowing for routine inspection and seizure.
China is Apple's fastest-growing area for sales and services, and the largest smartphone market in the world. Apple CEO Tim Cook has said that "China was very key to our results" while speaking to press about Apple's financial performance in July 2011, and that Apple is "just scratching the surface right now" in that market. [via 9to5Mac]