Content Delivery Networks (CDN) Overview
What is a Content Delivery Networks (CDN)?
A Content Delivery Networks (or CDN) is a service operating across a widely distributed system of servers to bring web content to an end-user based on the end-user's geographic location.
A server optimally situated to deliver the best performance and fastest load times is determined algorithmically, with the goal of noticeably improving the end-user's experience (e.g. reduced page load time). This technology is becoming more essential as websites offer more streaming video, e-commerce and other applications where performance really matters.
Content Delivery Network (CDN) Features & Capabilities
Dynamic site acceleration
CDN caching rules
How CDN’s Work
CDN providers cache content in their own network or in third-party networks. When a user clicks on a website, the CDN redirects the request to the to the server geographically closest to the user without the user being aware. The CDN calculates which server is nearest to the requestor and delivers content based on those calculations. The CDN eliminates the number of hops that a data packet must make which leads to optimized bandwidth and increased performance. It can also be useful in the event of an outage as content housed on a CDN remains accessible to at least a portion of the user base.
More recently, CDNs have been using machine learning technology to enable faster load and delivery times.
CDN pricing is typically a price per GB, with a sliding scale of decreasing cost as the overall volume increases. Price also varies depending on the geographic zone. As an example, for the first tier of 10 TB in North America and Europe, the per GB price may vary between $0.04 to $0.25 or more, depending on product capabilities.