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How Physically Visualising The Internet Can Prove Vital For Retailers

Ben covers web and technology giants such as Google, Amazon, and Microsoft and their impact on the cloud computing industry, whilst also writing about data centre players and their increasing importance in Europe. He also covers future technologies such as drones, aerospace, science, and the effect of technology on the environment.

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Dyn’s new Internet Intelligence tool helps businesses find the best cloud service provider for different regions

The web, the Internet, cyberspace. On a surface level we all know what they are and what we can do, but when it comes to actually quantifying what is going on in the e-nether region things can get a bit tricky.

Businesses have come to rely on the Internet for much of their revenue nowadays. Take retailers for instance, online stores rely on the ever growing numbers of online shoppers to save revenue, using websites to process, ship and handle customer enquiries.

But there needs to be more transparency in allowing these retailers to see how the Internet works, says one company, and this transparency could prove vital for expanding business to new markets and keeping their customers happy.

Internet Intelligence

That company is Dyn, an Internet performance company that last month released a tool allowing business to do just that – visualise how the Internet works to understand how to reap benefits from working online.

cloudThe tool, called rather simply Internet Intelligence, unveils the inner cogs, levers and switches of the Internet and claims to show businesses how best to route their global traffic and where to place their data centres to achieve top performance from different markets around the world.

“It’s fundamentally the ability to see the Internet and understand how it’s performing and operating,” EMEA managing director Paul Heywood told TechWeekEurope.

Dyn provides services for web giants such as Netflix, Twitter, and Etsy. But Heywood said that these companies are in the web “elite”; those companies already have access to the information they need to scale, manipulate and improve their global Internet connections and routes to stay on top of traffic and provide the best service to their customers.

Heywood said that Dyn’s Internet Intelligence tool is for the other 99 percent, the retailers and businesses that don’t have access to this critical information.

“The problem was that we had customers coming to Dyn at the end of their business decisions. For example, they were saying they opened a data centre in Dubai, and right now they need to load balance all their middle eastern customers for that data centre now that it’s built,” he said.

But that’s too late, according to Dyn. Just because a data centre is located in Dubai, it doesn’t necessarily mean that’s the place region to server your middle eastern customers from. Instead, it’s all to do with what connections are going into and out of that data centre.

“There’s an issue there in that the decision to build or use that data centre. The decision in how to facilitate that middle eastern region was a pure guess, based on a map of the world. The reality is the Internet isn’t built like the world map,” said Heywood.

cloudInternet Intelligence enables customers to physically see the latency and performance of connections around the world, and visualise how best to connect to a new market.

Currently, Dyn offers a look into the performance of providers such as AWS, IBM SoftLayer, and Rackspace.

For example, if a UK business is keen to expand online trade to China, Dyn can offer information as to those CSPs (cloud service providers) doing it best. By comparing latency measurements – Time To First Byte (TTFB), the measure of how long it takes for your browser to get data back from a web server after you’ve hit go – CSPs rank in the following order for routes to China:

DigitalOcean London → Beijing (256 milliseconds)

Rackspace London → Beijing (260 ms)

AWS Dublin Zone A → Beijing (305 ms)

Softlayer London → Beijing (312 ms)

Through the Software-as-as-Service application, customers get a single view across all Internet assets, with the tool allowing companies to manage and deploy to their cloud providers, identify issues in real-time while performing  analysis of problems and effects and create plans for how to improve and expand their Internet infrastructure.

All this vital to keeping customers and shoppers happy, therefore it is mission critical to any online business.

Furthermore, when Internet Intelligence is combined with Dyn’s Traffic Management product for load balancing and geographic routing, companies can make changes to the routes of their traffic, allowing them to provide their customers with the best experience possible.

All this is thanks to hundreds of sensors that Dyn has deployed in data centres around the world, collecting massive amounts of real-time data for customers.

“At the end of the day you lose customers and you lose adoption if that experience isn’t good for your end user. How do you do it? How do you see the Internet? This is our third leg for our stool. This is how you visualise your connections,” said Heywood.

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