Akamai Diversity

The Akamai Blog

March 2020 - What's New in Delivery, Services and Support

Welcome to Day 3 of Akamai's March 2020 Release. Before we dive into today's new and exciting announcements, just a reminder of the week's schedule:

  • Monday was Day 1 for security with enhancements to Bot Manager, Fast DNS, Kona Site Defender, Managed Security Service, Prolexic Routed, and Web Application Protector.

  • Tuesday added another day of security updates, including for Enterprise Threat Protector, DNSi CacheServe, Fast DNS, and Identity Cloud.

  • Wednesday (today) is all about traffic and content delivery.

  • Thursday adds a new dimension to the digital customer experience with a spotlight on short-form video.

  • Friday is for developers and customers looking for new ways to manage their Akamai deployment faster, and as code.

Welcome to Day 3 of Akamai's March 2020 Release. Today, we're shining a spotlight on Akamai's delivery products as well as recent updates from our support and services offerings. Before we dive into the new and exciting announcements let's look at some of the recent milestones we have hit and also recap how Akamai delivery products serve customers each and every day.

The Growing Role of the Edge

In March 2020, Akamai set a new record of 167 Tbps of peak traffic on our delivery platform. Overall, Akamai has seen double the web traffic so far in Q1 2020 compared with Q1 2019. Surging traffic levels and sheer growth in the number and diversity of connected devices are all shaping a larger role for the edge.

The Akamai Edge is a vast network that has been deployed globally, which over the years has become a scalable, intelligent platform with unique edge networking and computing capabilities. It enables functionalities that can be run on the edge of the network to offload customer's origin requests, optimize performance by accelerating content or delivering from as close to the end user as possible and, last but not the least, offsetting some of the operational costs that customers have to bear upstream in their cloud workflows.

Delivering Flawless Experiences with Akamai

For many organizations, digital properties drive their business. Helping deliver flawless digital experiences to online audiences is one area where the Akamai Edge excels. Regardless of the type of content an organization is trying to deliver, be it websites, apps, APIs, video, software or smaller objects, Akamai's comprehensive set of content delivery products, which includes Ion, Adaptive Media Delivery and Download Delivery are designed to deliver great digital experiences for each and every user, regardless of location, device or network. To achieve this, Akamai relies on it's Intelligent Edge Platform, a use case tailored approach, and Edge Intelligence:

deliveryone.jpg

Link to Reference Architectures

Akamai Intelligent Edge Platform

The Akamai Intelligent Edge Platform is the most pervasive CDN in the world, built to ensure reliability, scalability, and reach while minimizing the impact of network congestion for consistent digital experiences. With more than 275,000 servers in 136 countries and nearly 1,500 networks around the world, Akamai remains closer to the audience, for the lowest latency and highest quality.

Use Case-Tailored Products

Each Akamai delivery product is built on top of the Akamai Intelligent Edge Platform foundation, inheriting the benefit it provides. The products are fine-tuned to address major content delivery use cases, and different products are used to deliver website and app performance, API acceleration, video delivery, large file downloads, or small object delivery. These use cases are unique, require different delivery configurations, and -- in some cases -- different hardware optimizations, to achieve the best delivery performance and offload for a given scenario.  

Edge Intelligence

The pervasiveness and proximity of the Akamai Intelligent Edge Platform to end users present unlimited opportunity to further optimize end-user experiences and offload requests from customers' origin infrastructures. Akamai's edge intelligence capabilities help customers solve complexity close to end users and include:

  • reducing page weight and load times

  • speeding up apps and sites

  • shaping traffic

  • managing third-party scripts

  • protecting and monetizing video content 

  • governing and authenticating API requests 

  • optimizing images and videos

  • customized experiences with serverless computing

Announcement Highlights

We're excited to announce several enhancements to our delivery products that are designed to improve performance and origin offload for websites, apps, APIs, videos, downloads, and objects delivered from the Akamai Intelligent Edge Platform. Specifically for websites, apps, and APIs, Akamai has made enhancements that reduce time to first byte up to 30% and improve offload by up to 50% for customers with standard tiered distribution. The recent rollout of Bottleneck Bandwidth and RTT (BBR) further optimizes the speed at which video, downloads, and objects are delivered over last-mile networks to end users. As a result, customers have already seen a 5%-18% improvement in throughput. Additional features are being rolled out to improve origin offload for video on demand content. 

We're announcing our expanded list of server-side watermarking content security partners, which now include Irdeto, NAGRA, Verimatrix, ContentArmor, and INKA Entworks. These partners have integrated their watermarking solutions with Akamai's platform, which provides customers the option to work with a variety of vendors. Many of these partners have also integrated Akamai's Access Revocation API into their offerings to shut down sources of piracy in near real time. The growing list of partners further solidifies the role of the Akamai Intelligent Edge Platform in helping combat the growing issue of video piracy. 

Akamai has announced the new Premium Service and Support 3.0, which provides high-touch engagement and aligned support experts who have extensive knowledge and understanding of all Akamai solutions. This service enables delivery configuration optimization through best practices and regular validation of product value to improve viewer experience.

To learn more about what's new for your products, continue reading below:

Adaptive Media Delivery

Cloud Wrapper

Download Delivery

Ion

Service and Support


Adaptive Media Delivery

Adaptive Media Delivery introduces improvements to delivery performance, offload, and reliability for streaming content. The addition of new integrated watermarking partners broadens support for the edge watermarking solution. The new breadcrumbs feature provides players with visibility into how each request was handled and served from within the Akamai Intelligent Edge Platform

Key Features

Origin Failover

Identifies origin and network issues before they extend to the client, helping to reduce the likelihood of a rebuffer event during an origin failure. 

BBR (Bottleneck Bandwidth and RTT)

Rollout of the BBR congestion control algorithm across the Akamai Intelligent Edge Platform, which is designed to help improve the reliability and resiliency of data transferred by optimizing the rate at which it's transmitted over last-mile networks to end users. 

Breadcrumbs

Real-time tracing of edge and origin requests/responses for support in debugging cache misses and routes.

Optimized XML

Reviews and strips unnecessary variables in a configuration, lightening network load and providing incremental performance improvements.

TLS 1.3

Introduces support for Transport Layer Security (TLS) 1.3 for HTTPS traffic.

Quick Retry GA

Optimizes video playback quality by intelligently detecting and avoiding network bottlenecks using dynamic routing to attempt a different connection path, resulting in fewer rebuffering events.  

SameSite Cookie Support





Support for SameSite cookie added for current and upcoming browser releases to further protect end-user privacy. Added support for cookie-based Token Auth to be compatible with SameSite cookie updates.


Offload Improvements

Increased cache space and improved offload levels for VOD content as a result of proactively evicting live content that no longer needs to be in cache. 

Support for Additional Third-Party Watermarking Providers

Adds edge watermarking support for customers who use Irdeto, NAGRA, Verimatrix, ContentArmor, and INKA.


Cloud Wrapper

Cloud Wrapper introduces a new and improved customer onboarding experience with predictive reporting that analyzes capacity required for customers, enabling them to be more informed about how offload is being managed.

Key Features

Footprint Descriptor

Provides better overall prediction, management, and reporting of storage quotas and offload. The feature analyzes capacity, and provides modeling and visibility into capacity and offload.

 


Download Delivery

Download Delivery introduces improvements to delivery performance and reliability for large file downloads. The addition of TLS 1.3 boosts the security of traffic delivered over HTTPS.

Key Features

BBR (Bottleneck Bandwidth and RTT)

Rollout of the BBR congestion control algorithm across the Akamai Intelligent Edge Platform, which is designed to help improve the reliability and resiliency of data transferred by optimizing the rate at which it's transmitted over last-mile networks to end users. 

Optimized XML

Reviews and strips unnecessary variables in a configuration, lightening network load and providing incremental performance improvements.

TLS 1.3




Introduces support for Transport Layer Security (TLS) 1.3 for HTTPS traffic.

Breadcrumbs

Real-time tracing of edge and origin requests/responses for support in debugging cache misses and routes.

SameSite Cookie Support

Support for SameSite cookie added for current and upcoming browser releases to further protect end- user privacy. Added support for cookie- based Token Auth to be compatible with SameSite cookie updates.

 


Ion

Ion has added several updates that improve website and app performance and boost origin offload, keeping digital experiences fully optimized and cached close to users. The addition of TLS 1.3 boosts the security of traffic delivered over HTTPS, while the shared Cache TTL feature simplifies cache management for a segment of customers using a multi-CDN architecture. 

Key Features

Offload Improvements

Updated caching technology and infrastructure enhancements that improve offload with standard tiered distribution by up to 50%.

TLS 1.3

Introduces support for Transport Layer Security (TLS) 1.3 for HTTPS traffic.

Edge Server Improvements

Additional edge server optimizations that improve request processing flow and reduce time to first byte (TTFB) by up to 30%.

DNS Performance Improvements

Improves processing of DNS lookups to reduce the time required to connect clients to the most optimal edge servers.

Shared Cache TTL

Introduces support for the s-maxage HTTP header to simplify cache management and apply cache TTL consistently across a multi-CDN environment.

Resource Optimizer SVG support

Introduces Resource Optimizer support for SVG file types to reduce resource consumption by up to 30%.

Optimized XML

Reviews and strips unnecessary variables in a configuration, lightening network load and providing incremental performance improvements.


Service and Support

Premium Service and Support 3.0 provides high-touch engagement and aligned support professional experts with extensive knowledge and understanding of all Akamai solutions.

Key Features

Premium Service and Support 3.0

Enables media configuration optimization through best practices and regular validation of product value to improve viewer experience. It includes a catalog of technical business assessment with tools to ensure that the different aspects of media distribution are set up and configured correctly. 

 


Stay tuned for Day 4, where we will discuss what's new in web performance.

 

Leave a comment