Akamai (s AKAM), in a move aimed at helping it better deliver customer websites to a wider range of mobile devices, has acquired mobile services company Velocitude. The acquisition, the terms of which were not disclosed, will give Akamai the ability to dynamically transform customer websites to fit all the different screen sizes and form factors available on mobile devices.
Velocitude’s technology works by detecting the mobile device on which a user is accessing a website and automagically transforming that website to fit the screen dimensions and capabilities of the device. Since the majority of websites are not currently optimized for mobile delivery — and since the mobile device market is incredibly fragmented, with all sorts of device form factors and operating systems — technology like Velocitude’s makes it easy for publishers to reach all those devices without building new pages or websites for each of them.
According to Akamai’s director of corporate communications, Jeff Young, the new content transformation service should be integrated into Akamai’s network within the next 30 days and will be available as a module along with its existing application acceleration and dynamic site acceleration products. There’s also a heavy e-commerce and m-commerce component to Velocitude’s service, which should fit in nicely with Akamai’s existing small object and dynamic site acceleration capabilities. Akamai serves 90 of the top 100 e-commerce sites online; this acquisition will give them the ability to deliver mobile commerce services without creating applications or websites to target individual devices.
Akamai’s Velocitude buy is similar to rival Limelight Networks’ (s LLNW) acquisition of mobile services firm Kiptronic last year. Kiptronic also provides on-the-fly mobile page transformation, enabling Limelight’s customers to create a website that is dynamically formatted to fit different mobile screens.
Mobile is becoming a huge market, as shown by the Cisco (s CSCO) Visual Networking Index (VNI). In February, the network equipment vendor forecast that by 2014, we will be using 3.6 exabytes of data traffic each month on mobile networks worldwide. And Akamai wants to be the CDN to deliver that data.
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