Get the Power of the Edge with a Single Line of Code

February 4th, 2019

Rolf Muralt

VP Product Management

edgemesh is an American startup founded by Jacob Loveless. People have compared him to a hands-on magician because the application performance edgemesh provides can seem like magic, given that CDN acceleration is a mature technology and business. Six months after opening for general availability, edgemesh operates on more than 3,500 networks globally, providing their dynamic web acceleration platform to websites where milliseconds matter.

edgemesh acceleration can be added to a website with the addition of a single line of javascript that enhances your visitors’ browser with client side intelligent caching, adaptive security and dynamic routing capabilities. These edge-native features allow you to augment or replace traditionally centralized functions such as caching, content delivery, firewall and load balancing with new ultra-low latency, infinite scalability, and edge-side accelerated functionality. 

Speed is either business won or business lost. No corporations wants to lose visitors. Let's focus on this challenge, which is one of many edgemesh solves. 

Each year the average web page size increases. For example from 2469 kB in 2016 it grew to 3422 kB in 2017. Video content on sites jumped over 4.4x from 2016 to 2017.

With growing web page size, load times increase. More than half of online consumers abandon sites that take more than 3 seconds to load. Website abandonment cost e-brands over 2.6 billion dollars in missed sales in 2018 alone. Speed matters.

edgemesh’s EdgeCache component enables fast content access by using new browser communication capabilities, and also enables anticipatory pre-loading of content using this “out of band” channel.  Together they can deliver web experiences that are 2-10x faster than traditional models alone.

The following table shows page load time versus bounce rate: 

At 3 seconds, a site loses 11% of all visitors. At 7 seconds, a site loses more than half of visitors.

edgemesh founder, Jacob Loveless, explains how they use cloudlets from MobiledgeX and why: “Yes, we run Supernodes (always online peers that provide cache support) on MobiledgeX in 3 sites in Germany - and they work great. When a browser in Germany needs to access a peer for web page cache (e.g. videos, images etc) the MobiledgeX hosted Supernodes will be their peer.”

With MobiledgeX, the Supernodes run 2.5 x faster than when running on a local host in traditional data centers. By fine tuning the content of pages, results of 3.5x or more could be achieved.

Using the new communications methods in modern HTML5 browsers, edgemesh also avoids the well-known performance problems inherent in TCP/IP by using UDP transmission -- a connectionless protocol.  Since UDP doesn’t provide any delivery assurance, the fewer the hops in the network connection, the lower the probability of data loss issues, so it helps to deploy Supernodes as close the user as possible. With Supernodes placed many 'hops' (data links) away from the user, there is a greater chance of dropping packets and forcing a re-delivery of an asset stream. Supernodes on MobiledgeX exist before the major choke points of the internet, so there is less likely to be congestion when a high volume of users hit a site simultaneously.

edgemesh with MobiledgeX is an elegant solution, “a result that often arouses an aha! feeling—one that is generally brief, concise, and beautiful to the mind's eye,” says Loveless.

Other alternatives enable transparent Peer-to-Peer (P2P) replication between the browsers, but they are not solutions preferred by enterprise customers.

The primary reason is the fear that users will feel their bandwidth is being utilized to service other customers. Users (since they pay for edge bandwidth) see each Mb of data as theirs. By redirecting these resources (even for the benefit of all) there is some pushback. Suspicion of being cheated is not good for business.

This is primarily a concern in mobile networks. With Supernodes on MobiledgeX (a mobile co-located infrastructure as a service) - there's no reason to do P2P style distribution, as the Supernodes are effectively “in the middle” of all the users already.

Interested to learn more about running edgemesh & MobiledgeX? Contact our edge service experts.

In case you missed it, check out our previous blog post: Use Cases—The Strange Dance of Invention, Innovation and Discovery.