Cotendo sees strong growth in mobile Internet acceleration service
The speed with which users reach and interact with Internet content is not just about bandwidth. Increasingly the Internet community is recognizing—and addressing—more and more factors that can impact the Internet experience.
Google and OpenDNS, for example, recently announced an Internet Speedup Initiative. And companies such as Internap (CP: No end to cloud service creativity) and Virtela (CP: Virtela expands cloud acceleration to public cloud) also are doing innovative things in this area.
The latest success story involving the enhancement of the Internet experience comes from Cotendo, which announced last week that it has quadrupled the customer base for its Mobile Acceleration Suite—an achievement the company credits to a strategy that involves delivering its services largely through data centers operated by Equinix.
How the service works
The aim of Cotendo’s Mobile Acceleration Suite is to enhance the quality of the experience when mobile users served by participating mobile operators interact with web content from participating content providers.
“We write our own software that breaks the laws of the Internet,” explained Cotendo Vice President of Operations Michael (Misha) Kuperman in an interview.
When an end user accesses content from a web site, the request actually goes first to the closest Cotendo data center, where Cotendo uses a variety of tricks to accelerate the delivery of content from the content provider. Kuperman noted, for example, that Cotendo knows what the round-trip time between the two endpoints should be—and if the web site is not responding in the expected time, Cotendo doesn’t wait for the normal timeout to occur before making a second attempt.
“You can make a lot of decisions at the edge instead of going back to your originating infrastructure,” Kuperman explained.
The Equinix edge
Cotendo operates more than 30 data centers, most of which are in Equinix facilities—and Kuperman said Cotendo benefits in two ways from working so closely with Equinix. First, data center management is simplified because Cotendo can use the same operational procedures and portal for all data centers located in Equinix facilities. Second, the company can use Equinix Global Roaming Exchange Peering at Equinix, which essentially simplifies the process of establishing peering relationships for clients.
If each of the company’s 30 data centers used a different portal and procedures, Kuperman said he would have to triple staff “just to do the logistics.”
Cotendo connects with “at least four carriers per data center,” Kuperman said, and the company benefits from the fact that many service providers and content providers with whom it needs to connect are already co-located in Equinix centers, enabling Cotendo to connect with them using a local cross connect. “It’s very easy to connect and expand capacity,” Kuperman said, and traffic between the two parties flows in “nanoseconds, not milliseconds.”
The Equinix peering service eliminates the need to arrange interconnection with peering partners and minimizes peering costs, Kuperman said. “I can use one port for as many connections as I feel I can fit into the port,” he said. “If I negotiated with individual carriers, I would have to use a port per carrier.”
That capability, he said, maximizes the time before Cotendo needs to add additional network devices to support its offering.
“One of the reasons we’re doing so well is we are very responsive to customer demands,” Kuperman continued. “Where customers say ‘I wish we had better performance with Carrier X,’ it’s easy to negotiate a connection and fix it within days.”
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© 2013 Penton Media Inc.
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