Google has partnered with four content distribution network providers in a bid to give customers of its cloud platform service more ways to quickly push media-rich content to end users.
On Wednesday the company announced a new service dubbed CDN Interconnect that it will deliver in collaboration with CloudFlare, Level 3 Communications, Highwinds and Fastly.
The service will allow Google’s cloud customers to cache and deliver content close to where their end users are geographically located, Ofir Roval, product manager of Google Cloud Platform said in a blog post.
Many current Web and mobile applications, including social media, gaming and communications, are heavily laden with rich media content such as HD video and retina density images, Roval said.
“As payload size and media quality increase, users continue to expect low latency access to their favorite content,” Roval noted.
“Whether it’s a real time plot of ride-sharing cars on your phone, a photo-rich app, or streaming HD music or video from the cloud, abundant choice in great services today makes users unlikely to tolerate [lagging] or unresponsive applications,” he said.
CDN Interconnect allows the four partnering CDN providers to directly link their services with Google’s edge network at various locations around the world. Google currently maintains more than 70 so-called edge points of presence (POPs) in 33 countries that are connected to each other via the company’s backbone network.
The edge POPs are where Google links up with other network operators to deliver Google cloud content to end users. The edge POPs also are where businesses can directly connect their networks to Google’s network to exchange cloud traffic.
For its CDN Interconnect service, Google will provide what it describes as a private, high-performance link between its cloud platform and its CDN provider partners. The arrangement will give Google cloud users a reliable, low-latency way to push content from Google’s data centers out to end users, Roval said.
He described the service as being particularly useful for heavy, frequently accessed content and for content that requires frequent updates.
Google will not charge fees for traffic flowing into its cloud platform via the CDN Interconnect service. Traffic from Google’s Cloud Platform to the various CDN Interconnect locations will be subject to egress pricing rates that vary by region.
CDN Interconnect traffic within a geographic location will be subject to intra-region egress rates ranging from 4 cents per gigabyte in North America to 6 cents per gigabyte in the Asia Pacific region.
“CDN Interconnect’s special egress pricing should encourage the best practice of regularly distributing content originating from Cloud Platform out to the edge close to your end-users,” Roval said.
Google is the only one among the three major cloud service providers that currently doesn't have its own content distribution network. Both Amazon, with its CloudFront service, and Microsoft, with its Azure CDN, already offer cloud customers a way to distribute high-bandwidth content, such as audio, video and images faster and more reliably to end users.
Amazon’s CDN recently achieved compliance with the requirements of the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard to encourage developers of applications with in-app purchasing functions to use the service.