AT&T sees opportunity for CDN services

Jessica Scarpati
18 Jul 2011

Consumers have short attention spans. If there's even a minor delay loading an online video or placing an item in an e-tailer's shopping cart, they won't hesitate to move on. Network operators are hoping that this behavior will make enterprises anxious to buy their CDN services, as part of a broader push toward next-generation content monetization strategies.

AT&T is elbowing its way into the market with its recently announced cloud-based AT&T Content Delivery Network service, which is due out for general availability in the third quarter of 2011. Joe Lueckenhoff, senior vice president of business product management at AT&T, spoke with about how AT&T intends to differentiate and compete in a market that's long been dominated by pure-play CDN providers and often perceived as relevant only to video content providers and dotcoms.

How does AT&T plan to compete against more established CDN service providers, such as Akamai?

Lueckenhoff: While the CDN service stands on its own very well, we think it's important [to note] that ... it's part of our cloud offering. Not only can we provide AT&T CDN services, we can also provide those same customers VPN services or other cloud-based services, like our AT&T Virtual Private Cloud.

AT&T's built the CDN [service] into our network fabric. It's protected with the security at every layer of our network, and it's supported on our global IP network. AT&T's global IP network operates at 99.99% availability. We currently handle about 23.7 petabytes of data traffic on an average day.

So, the ability to provide CDN [services] on top of that network infrastructure that we already have is a natural ... play for our existing customers who use AT&T's other data services. That's why we think the benefit for our customers is really tied to our network. This is ... one more piece of the portfolio that fleshes everything out for [business] customers.

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