Rackspace goes Akamai, Tata buys BitGravity
A little change of pace today, back to some CDN market news…
Rackspace forms a strategic alliance with Akamai. Today, Rackspace’s Cloud Files storage service is integrated with Limelight’s CDN. The new alliance means that Akamai will be replacing Limelight as the CDN, and some new features will be offered as the integration is done. (While those features are things that Limelight does for its regular customers, they were not integrated into the Rackspace cloud CDN service.) Rackspace currently uses Limelight as its CDN partner for regular hosting deals, as well, and intends to offer Akamai in the future. (Most hosters have channel deals of that sort with one or more CDNs.) What makes this interesting is that it marks the first significant integration of Akamai as a wholesale CDN to a cloud CDN — and that you’ll be able to get Akamai delivery for cloud CDN prices. (Gartner clients only: Is a Cloud CDN Right For You?)
Tata Communications buys BitGravity. Video CDN BitGravity was pretty cool and promising when it first came to market. A number of my clients in traditional media and established online companies really loved what they had to offer in the live-streaming space when they launched. Unfortunately, they never really manage to break out beyond that space. I always thought it was a bit weird for Tata to choose to license their technology as the basis for Tata’s own CDN, given Tata’s customer base and use cases that I’d expected to see Tata be successful at selling. Tata’s investment in them at the time seemed outrageously large to me — for what they paid, you’d have thought they could have just bought the company outright (especially given the rumored valuation of Panther Express when it was acquired by CDNetworks). I’d speculate that this was a desperation buyout for BitGravity, but there are lots of questions about the long-term value of this to Tata.