A report today from Streamingmedia.com points to evidence that Apple’s new Content Delivery Network is now live in at least the U.S. and Europe. The news follows a report in May that Apple was negotiating with ISPs in order to build out its own Content Delivery Network to move away from the third-party services it currently uses to distribute iTunes content, iCloud data, and software to customers. While the CDN isn’t yet delivering all of Apple’s content, the report notes OS X downloads are now coming from the new content delivery network and that Apple has made deals with Comcast and others to have 10x its current capacity:
In addition, Apple has interconnect deals in place with multiple ISPs, including Comcast and others, and has paid to get direct access to their networks. Doing trace routes on OS X downloads from multiple ISPs now shows them coming from directly from Apple’s CDN, as you can see with the example below.
- te-0-7-0-9-sur02.lowell.ma.boston.comcast.net (188.8.131.52)
- be-21-ar01.needham.ma.boston.comcast.net (184.108.40.206)
- he-1-12-0-0-cr01.newyork.ny.ibone.comcast.net (220.127.116.11)
- he-4-15-0-0-cr01.ashburn.va.ibone.comcast.net (18.104.22.168)
- he-0-11-0-1-pe04.ashburn.va.ibone.comcast.net (22.214.171.124)
- as714-2-c.ashburn.va.ibone.comcast.net (126.96.36.199)
- usqas1-vip-sx-003.aaplimg.com (188.8.131.52)
The report continues by claiming sources at ISPs say Apple has a “massive amount of capacity in place” with approximately 10x the amount of capacity it has currently. While the OS X downloads shown above are proof Apple is already rolling out its own CDN, the company is reportedly continuing to use Akamai and Level 3′s CDN services for iTunes, iTunes Radio and App Store downloads. Streamingmedia, which has been tracking the development of Apple’s CDN over the last 12 months, notes that Apple has invested a lot in the project and achieved a surprisingly fast roll out:
It’s too early to know how much traffic will come over and when, but Apple’s already started using their own CDN much faster than I expected. The pace of their build out and amount of money they are spending on infrastructure is incredible. Based on my calculations, Apple has already put in place multiple terabits per second of capacity and by the end of this year, will have invested well more than $100M in their CDN build out..
While Apple already controls most aspects of the experience it delivers to end users, the roll out of its own CDN will allow it to increase its capacity and have more control over the infrastructure that delivers content to its users.