Google's Growing Infrastructure Advantage

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Google’s (s goog) content comprises between 6 and 10 percent of global Internet traffic, making its internal network one of the top three ISPs in the world, according to Arbor Networks. The maker of deep packet inspection equipment, which runs a survey of international ISPs, detailed Google’s traffic in a blog post Tuesday.

However, the total volume of traffic is just one measure of how big a web presence a company has — the other is how it can leverage that scale to cut its costs and boost its ability to better serve customers. For Google, which has long seen its infrastructure as a competitive advantage, the ability to keep its mighty web traffic on its own network rather than pay others to deliver it is a margin-boosting — and quality-boosting — advantage.

Arbor notes that Google has consistently increased its direct peering, and through the use of its own content caching appliances located at ISPs around the world, it has cut out middlemen like Level 3 (s lvlt) or Bandwidth.com. Are Yahoo (s yahoo) and Microsoft (s msft) taking notes?

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11 Comments

Peter

Interesting article!

@Randy Bias: why would I want to look up the people you are namedropping?
And why should I care that Brian Swansson worked the same place as you?
Cut the crap

Randy Bias

This is typical. Any business with significant girth does this. Both Microsoft and Yahoo! have been doing the same for many many years. At Microsoft, a buddy of mine Brian Swenson, look him up, has been running the network like this since 2002-ish. Brian worked at the same ISPs I did, InterNex / XO Communications (AS2828).

Same story at Yahoo! where Matt Petach (look him up) has been doing the same since 2003. Matt worked with Brian and I at large ISPs back in the day.

So, this story is a red herring. Google has little or no advantage in terms of peering relationships. Scaling big networks has been a done deal since the late 90s.

The real scale advantage that Google has is software based, not network based.

–Randy

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