Why does Akamai need to geographically disperse its servers to deliver its customers’ Web content?
The need for Akamai to geographically disperse its servers was to optimize network performance and improve web content delivery to customers. Evidence from the case study shows that many customers and business enterprises were dissatisfied with the internet services offered because of bandwidth limitations. The underlying reason for limited bandwidth and slow internet access was because the network had been designed to host text-based files.
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In addition, no dedicated servers with intelligent software were designed into the network to optimize service delivery. According to the case study, different organizations and customers are geographically dispersed with different web content needs and expectations. In context, many organizations were using the internet with limited bandwidth, which had adverse performance implications on content delivery.
Bandwidth limitations and low-performance capabilities limited the ability of customers to download high-quality files limiting thousands of customers from accessing music, video, and other online content in real-time. Some of the crucial problems mentioned because of bandwidth limitations included slow, jerky frames, poor visual quality, freeze-frame video, and low data propagation capabilities.
Business organizations such as YouTube and MySpace with large customer bases depend on the performance of the internet to provide high-quality services to meet customer needs and expectations in the provision of online services. A critical analysis of the case study indicates that optimizing network performance to achieve real-time delivery of web content and solve the problems identified above depends on the use of distributed servers.
Using distributed servers to optimize network performance and enable the internet to accommodate new data formats such as large video files and music could benefit both business organizations and customers in accessing online files and content. The Akamai distributed server-based solution is a one-time technical approach to solving problems arising from high internet traffic. The distributed server solution provides real-time network monitoring capabilities, which reduces the delay customers experience when accessing online content and files. Distributed servers provide solutions by segregating different websites based on the type of content they host.
When a unique request to download a large file is received by a server, the request is redirected to a dedicated server, which services the special request, reducing the time required to access and download the file. The Akamai distributed server solution is based on a comprehensive analysis of network connectivity, bandwidth load, and alternative routes to redirect requests to optimize performance.
If you wanted to deliver software content over the internet, would you sign up for Akamai’s services? Why or why not?
An analysis of the case study justifies the need to sign up for Akamai services to deliver software content. The underlying reasons include the need to safeguard software content against piracy. Common knowledge has it that proprietary software is expensive. However, according to the case study, signing up for Akamai services enforces product piracy. The case study shows little evidence on how piracy could be limited, but a critical analysis of the case study shows that the software products designed and developed by Akamai have learning capabilities and are of high integrity and security. That is in addition to the inbuilt software learning capabilities on emerging trends in software development.
An analysis of the case study indicates that signing up for the Akamai services brings with it several benefits that include reduced network congestion to optimize performance. In addition, signing up for the service enables easy and direct access to the product in real-time, enabling more customers to access the software content. Other benefits of using Akamai services include low congestion and high file download speeds, quality video, and real-time access to online files. In addition, firms such as ESPN, MySpace, and NBA.com increasingly rely on Akamai services to deliver music and video content in real, reducing the time a customer previously required to access web content.
What advantages does an advertiser derive from using Akamai’s EdgeScape service? What kind of products might benefit from this kind of service?
Using Akamai EdgeScape services can benefit an advertiser because the product is designed to deliver internet content in a better way by optimizing web performance at minimal costs. An advertiser derives satisfaction from the EdgeScape services because the application has inbuilt capabilities to deliver specific content to the right audience, enabling end-users to access content designed for them in real-time.
Customers with unique web content request access services from the nearest servers because EdgeEscape has inbuilt sensing capabilities to identify each request from different end-users and to redirect appropriate content to the nearest server. Typical examples include the delivery of L.L Bean pages from different servers depending on the location of the customer and the server. The Akamai software has the capability to deliver specific advertiser content to a specific country, code, zip code, and speed, and to provide business intelligence information using high computing capabilities.
The products that might benefit from this kind of services include large video files, large ISP, and music downloads. In addition, movie games, high definition television, internet video, CDN industry products, and streaming news.
Why should Akamai be wary of the P2P network? How could it counter competition from P2P networks?
P2P networks offer less expensive internet service delivery options and technologies, such as video delivery networks. In addition, the competition from the P2P networks has registered an upsurge because many P2P networks have migrated from the old illegal platform by registering and engaging with the legitimate CDN business. CDN networks offer video and other file services through highly distributed P2P networks that offer competitive prices. If Akamai does not lay a competitive strategy to counter the P2P networks, the P2P networks could penetrate the market and reduce Akamai’s market share.
Akamai could counter P2P networks by adopting a similar distribution technology, which has the advantage of distributing titles that are in low demand. In addition, Akamai technology can borrow and integrate the concept of the P2P distribution technology into its distribution technology to deliver video and TV shows that are in high demand.
With the demand for high-bandwidth music and video exploding, why hasn’t Akamai’s stock performing better? If you were an investor, what factors would you encourage you to invest in Akamai? What factors will discourage you?
The 2008 crash that led to a severe financial crisis caused a 75% drastic downturn in the firm’s share value. The consequences were a loss of confidence in the shares because the share value fell to as low as $ 10 per share. The underlying reason for poor performance in shares was because of the recession that followed the economic meltdown, weakening the purchasing power of the customers for the products offered online. Analytically, the decline in the trading value of the shares might have adversely affected the performance of other firms and driven customers to seek cheaper services. That is in addition to the fact that the P2P networks provided customers with cheaper options as the financial crash had eroded the purchasing power of many customers.
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The factors I could advise Akamai to invest in include distributed network video by adopting the distribution technology to improve the capabilities of the firm, invest in high demand simultaneous audience, and in the delivery of video and TV commercials. The firm should not invest in low demand titles.