In a new Adweek OpEd, INAP’s SVP of Global Network Services, Mary Jane Horne, breaks down why latency is the biggest enemy of online advertisers, and explains in layperson’s terms the principles and benefits of network route optimization technologies, like INAP’s Performance IP®:
In fact, the system routing internet traffic works less like real-time GPS routing and more like those unwieldy fold-out highway roadmaps that were a staple of many family road trips gone awry. They are an adequate tool for picking the shortest path from point A to point B, but can’t factor in traffic delays, lane closures, accidents or the likelihood of Dad deciding a dilapidated roadside motel in central Nebraska is the perfect place to stop for the day.
In much the same way, the default system guiding internet traffic selects a route based on the lowest number of network “hops” (think tollbooths or highway interchanges) as opposed to the route with lowest estimated latency. While the shortest path sometimes is the fastest, traffic is always changing. Congestion can throttle speeds. The cables carrying data can be accidentally severed, stopping traffic altogether. Human error can temporarily take down a data center or network routers. But unless someone intervenes, the system will keep sending your traffic through this path, to the detriment of your latency goals, and ultimately, your clients and end users.
Network route optimization technologies, conversely, manipulate this default system by probing every potential route data can take, diverting traffic away from routes with latency that kills user experience. While it is pretty easy for a company’s network engineering team to manually route traffic, it’s not practical at scale. The randomness and speed at which networks change mean even an always-on army of experts can’t beat an automation engine that makes millions of traffic optimizations per day.
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