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Smart ADCs ensure app performance regardless of the access device and network used

Amir Peles, VP of technology, Radware | June 10, 2013
With the increasing use of Web applications from mobile devices and the variety of devices accessing applications through different types of networks, a new approach to application delivery optimization is required.

This vendor-written tech primer has been edited by Network World to eliminate product promotion, but readers should note it will likely favor the submitter's approach.

With the increasing use of Web applications from mobile devices and the variety of devices accessing applications through different types of networks, a new approach to application delivery optimization is required.

Application Delivery Controllers (ADCs) at the edge of the data center can play a key role addressing this challenge, with their ability to apply contextual application delivery optimization based on a wide range of information accessible to the ADC in real time. This includes the type of device, size of its screen and the access network type.

We are all experiencing how mobile is changing our lives -- not only in terms of the content we consume but also when it comes to how, where and when we access the Internet. Compared to the old paradigm of Internet access through a desktop from designated locations (at work or at home), smartphones and tablets have made the Internet accessible to an ever-increasing number of users, many of whom own and use more than one device at the same time.

With Internet access available practically anywhere and everywhere, it's no surprise the amount of time we spend online has grown exponentially. 

Mobile trends are continuously evolving. More personal devices, like car accessories and gaming devices, now connect to the Internet, and with the strong adaptation of LTE, mobile networks are providing faster service with higher bandwidth. However, the reality of users accessing more content from multiple locations/devices at any time, has created a number of new challenges that must be addressed:

Contextual application delivery optimization
In order to optimize the delivery of application/content according to the device and where the request came from, it's necessary that the application infrastructure is able to recognize several characteristics of the originating client and user profile, including:

All of these parameters can also take part in the security policy applied to the information delivered to the end user. This is especially the case in enterprise applications where an organization may have one security policy when accessing the Web application from within the organization, and a different security policy when connecting through a mobile network.

But optimized application delivery can't be achieved solely by the application itself. Smart ADCs, with access capabilities to information at the application layer, can collect all the required information in order to contextually decide which server can most optimally answer the request. In addition, ADCs can also help determine the best content optimization that can be applied (without compromising on QoE) and the best protocol optimization method for the request/device in question. Many mobile operators are already using ADCs in the core of their network to apply different traffic policies and security -- on a per-user basis.

 

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