In this blog post we’ll show you how an edge platform benefits the content and digital media industry in practice and all the agents involved in the process: DevOps, businesses and users.
You’ll find out why the union between the content and digital media industry and edge platforms is so successful.
The World Is Growing Even More Connected
The COVID-19 pandemic came to shake our certainties, to show us that what we take for granted can be drastically changed overnight. And one of the most impactful things it has done is to transform online customer behavior, which will undoubtedly never be the same again. What they look for, how they look for it, what they buy, when they buy and what they expect from the experiences, everything has changed! And let’s face it, to a more demanding level than ever before.
What was the result of this? Remote work, new entertainment habits and the massive growth of internet-connected devices have accelerated and extended the digital transformation to every aspect of business and our lives. But despite the shock, as part of the human essence we have adapted – or are still adapting – to new scenarios and habits.
Therefore, the companies that most quickly adapt to these changes and offer what customers expect in terms of online experience, products and services, will certainly be the ones that will grow stronger and gain even more space and loyal customers – if this hasn’t been your case yet, you will see here that it’s still possible to change your situation.
According to Euromonitor International’s Top 10 Global Consumer Trends 2021 report, companies must more than ever be aware of changes in customers’ values and behavior and must prioritize and reinforce their demands.
We have selected here some of the main trends that apply to businesses of all sectors:
- Craving convenience: There is great pressure for companies to quickly adapt their operations, developing a more resilient customer experience while preserving convenience levels, maintaining agility and continuity of the purchase journey across all channels.
- Playing with time: in the era of immediacy, time has become a commodity and has never been so valued. Companies must propose solutions that meet the customers’ desire to optimize their time, offering greater flexibility, especially with regard to products and services accessible from the customer’s home or nearby.
- Safety obsessed: the fear of contagion has encouraged customers to seek solutions that don’t require physical contact in order to avoid exposure. Furthermore, there’s a huge concern about data theft in the online environment. Companies must implement strict biological and digital security measures aimed at mitigating customers’ concerns.
- Thoughtful Thrifters: customers are more cautious and moderate with their finances, so they seek to obtain the best cost-benefit and prioritize value-added products and services. Companies must make value propositions, offering affordable options without reducing quality.
As you can see, flawless experiences, time savings, value-added products and security are must-haves for today’s customers and the least companies should offer.
To overcome these challenges, companies have to take a series of measures that will directly impact their success, and one of them is to use technologies that will help to face and even eliminate these problems. One of the technological solutions that undoubtedly makes the difference in offering the best experiences in the online world is an edge platform, a fundamental part of our indispensable internet.
Challenges In The Content And Digital Media Industry
So far we have talked about the global scenario and the challenges that all businesses face on a general level, but now let’s talk about specific problems that the technology sector has been facing lately.
Below are some of the main challenges this industry faces:
Increased demand for digital content
With the confinement caused by the pandemic, there was a boom in the search for fun and entertainment in the online environment – such as streaming video, music, podcasts and games – and, consequently, in the number of accesses to platforms that offer this type of service, especially in launching periods. The challenge here is to ensure availability and scalability regardless of demand.
Greater demand from users
Content and digital media platforms need to deal with the increasing demand from users for near real-time experiences that don’t have loading delays, crashes or interruptions. And a bad experience in this area, however small, is a crucial factor for the user to abandon your brand or not. The challenge here is for the platform to ensure a continuous experience, with extremely high speed, performance and resilience.
With the growth of entertainment, the number of platforms offering this type of service has also increased. Added to this, new players have entered this market, such as TV broadcasters that are also becoming streaming platforms. And this, in addition to meaning a greater offer of products and services, means fiercer competition, as the user wants to find what fits their criteria for best cost-benefit. The challenge, therefore, is to minimize costs throughout the production chain in order to offer a more competitive price and retain the end user.
Azion Edge Platform: The Best and Most Modern Content Delivery Solution
Azion is an innovative company and is always attentive to market trends to serve its customers in the best way possible. That’s why one of our primary focuses is to add value to your product or service with a series of features that optimize all the steps involved in the content distribution process and benefit all agents who participate in the process.
Azion’s Edge Platform is full-stack, open, extensible and programmable, simplifying and streamlining the way you build software. Its edge computing technology is scalable, meaning Azion is responsible for the maintenance and administration of the infrastructure, dynamically allocating resources to meet the needs and demands of customers.
Furthermore, its architecture is decentralized and distributed, which makes it offer lower latency, more reliability and high scalability compared to legacy CDNs and even cloud computing solutions. It also allows for real-time data processing, which is critical for time-sensitive applications in critical areas. The sum of these factors reflects in a better performance, with a lower operating cost. And with over 65 global edge locations, you can orchestrate development across multi-cloud, on-premise or on remote devices.
Those who choose Azion’s Edge Platform create a great competitive advantage and have numerous benefits. Just to give you an idea, some of them are:
- High availability for content and application delivery
- Very low latency
- Drastically reduced loading time
- Bandwidth savings
- Much more effective security
- Full observability
- Reduced operating costs
- Happy DevOps and Customers
The Benefits for DevOps
An important point to highlight is the improvement that Azion’s Edge Platform brings to the life of DevOps, who are there daily working behind the scenes and suffering directly from legacy systems. Furthermore, if it wasn’t for them, businesses would have no products to offer and end users would have nothing to use or purchase.
The benefits are numerous, but some of them are:
- Observability: Most traditional CDNs don’t provide DevOps with real-time observability, which makes it difficult to monitor the system, user behavior, and receive feedback – and this, of course, makes these professionals’ jobs difficult. An edge platform, in turn, gives DevOps a full and complete view of the system in real time.
- Control: DevOps, when working with traditional CDNs, don’t have control over configuration changes, which are the responsibility of the service provider. Furthermore, even the simplest changes can take a long time to be made, as they are also put in a queue. With an edge platform, DevOps have greater management and control, as well as more agility to apply changes via the management portal or API.
- Orchestration: DevOps can deploy, manage, control, monitor and update resources on the edge in real time, without the need for provisioning, and can integrate other services.
- Automation: Using SDN (Software-Defined Networking) makes it easy to use resources, so DevOps need only be concerned with creating and executing code and workloads on the edge; no provisioning, maintenance or operational tasks.
- Serverless model: the provider runs and manages servers and all infrastructure and resources, which eliminates scalability, planning, and maintenance tasks for DevOps.
- New use cases: the edge computing infrastructure facilitates the development of projects with modern technology, such as AI, AR, VR, IoT, machine learning, data and video streaming, 5G, and much more.
In addition to the benefits presented before, Azion goes a step further by offering a simpler, faster, yet complete customer journey that makes DevOps work easier, and delivers better business results.
See how easy it is to use an edge platform from start to finish:
1ˢᵗ Step: Build
Once you start using an edge platform, you can build, develop, launch, and scale applications without restrictions. At this point, you focus on creating the applications, defining the rules and parameters. Furthermore, in this phase you will build a scalable infrastructure with edge nodes, which can be remotely configured using zero-touch provisioning.
2ⁿᵈ Step: Secure
In this step, you will define application security issues at the edge – you can choose between Web Application Firewall, DDoS Protection and Network Layer Protection or all options simultaneously – which will allow you to track malicious traffic, isolate OWASP Top 10 threats, adapt to zero-day attacks, and much more.
3ʳᵈ Step: Deliver
After creating the applications on the edge platform, it’s possible to deliver them from a global network. That is, at that point, you are ready to use the network, and the content is ready to be delivered. There is also the possibility of adding all the intelligence (or part of it) of an edge platform to your own infrastructure through orchestration solutions.
4ᵗʰ Step: Observe
While an edge platform delivers content, with data analytics solutions you can see exactly what’s happening on your system and how your application users behave. That’s because you have access to real-time data about the entire operation, from start to finish, which even allows you to predict events and prevent incidents.
Azion is trusted by leading companies in the market. See below how the case of Omelete is an example of this successful partnership.
Brazil’s largest entertainment company, Omelete (or Omelete&CO group), disseminates pop culture to millions of geeks across the country with successful projects, such as CCXP and Game XP, and has the challenge of providing ever more fantastic performance experiences to an engaged audience, since:
- speed is one of the requirements for great user experiences¹;
- 61% share their user experiences with friends²; and
- 49% of Internet users abandon their favorite brands when they have a bad experience3.
In Brazil, the risks are even greater, as the quality of the Internet is still precarious in several places and traditional solutions are not able to provide the speed that Omelete and its millions of unique visitors want.
These obstacles are even greater when considering the barriers imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic, which led Omelete to organize its biggest event of the year, the Comic Con Experience (CCXP), in an unprecedented way: 100% digital.
By choosing Azion, Omelete not only migrated the service to an edge platform with more than 30 edge locations in Brazil, but had at its disposal the know-how to increase the performance of its applications and provide users with the best experience.
Studies predict that 78% of people in Latin America will connect to the mobile Internet by 2023⁴. Therefore, it is essential that Omelete is always close to the millions of geeks that follow its content, which will be driven by 5G experiences.
On Azion’s Edge Platform, which processes requests on the closest and best-performing server available, Omelete executes its code in a serverless environment and optimizes applications using edge-native tools, such as:
- Image Processor: allows Omelete to optimize and manipulate images from its websites in real time without impairing visual quality;
- Application Acceleration: enables high-speed access to the group’s websites, even from unstable networks, by optimizing protocols and building advanced request and response rules; and
- Edge Caching: speeds up the delivery of Omelete’s content by keeping it cached on the edge, closer to users.
In addition to the jump in performance obtained by Omelete with the Azion Platform, the creation of edge applications helped the group to reduce costs with its cloud provider by drastically decreasing the delivery of requests from the originating infrastructure.
Results and impacts
In 2019, more than 70 Omelete’s edge applications processed billions of requests, with only 15% of them reaching the cloud provider. The rest were delivered through Azion’s Edge using serverless architecture.
Altogether, Omelete&CO evolved its ecosystem in several areas, optimizing everything from website staging processes and live events to sections of the Omelete Store and other official group stores, which are protected by Azion’s WAF against fraud and complex attacks.
With 100% availability throughout Brazil, Omelete&CO’s applications are protected by the Azion Edge Platform’s multilayer security and Edge Firewall modules, which help by:
- automatically blocking access to the Tor network using Azion Network Lists;
- mitigating DDoS attacks that put service availability at risk; and
- enabling the creation of Edge Applications, which are protected against zero-day attacks.
In addition, Omelete’s reduced latency and processing time, among other positive indices, help the Brazilian pop culture brand to consolidate its top position in search engines. Are you researching the new Batman movie or reviews of the series you just followed? The results point to the Omelete!
Success with the transmission of the first all-digital CCXP
CCXP is the largest pop culture festival on the planet. In six years, the event brought together more than 1 million people, more than 120 film, series and TV artists, and more than 120 thousand comic artists and illustrators. However, in 2020, for the first time in its history, CCXP was 100% digital.
There were more than 150 hours of unpublished content and more than 1000 artists in one place, and the broadcast reached 113 countries, with support, sponsorship and partnerships on several fronts. With that, Azion’s mission was providing scalability, availability and performance to Omelete’s applications.
Result: Edge Application contributed to Omelete improving the user experience 15x with the delivery of static content from CCXP Worlds, and with more than 10 TB of images loaded on the edge, without impacting the source infrastructure and the costs that demand could generate.
In addition, the number of requests during the event, which was around 100x greater than the average volume received by Omelete’s servers in 2020 and 1000x higher in terms of data transferred, had a significant percentage served at the edge, reaching high performance levels and availability at all times.
With tens of Azion Edge Locations around the world, Omelete made the most of the investment in publicizing the event, which involved news in the mainstream media that, in itself, generated thousands of hits per minute, and was prepared to stay online in the midst of any scenarios.
To stay alive in the online world, there’s nowhere else to run: you either adopt digital transformation for good and the best technological solutions or the path to failure is just a matter of time. As failure is a word we don’t like to pronounce – let alone live – the best option is to choose complete tools that will exactly meet the demands of your business, in addition to providing peace of mind and ease of use for both your DevOps and end users.
As you have seen in our success case, an edge platform plays a fundamental role in the success of companies. And when the edge platform is Azion’s, the benefits and competitive advantage make all the difference.
|¹ Experience is everything: Here’s how to get it right||PwC|
|² Milliseconds Make Millions||Google & Deloitte|
|3 Edge Computing and 5G: Harnessing the distributed cloud for 5G success||Ericsson|
|⁴ How Fast is Fast Enough? Page Load Time & Your Bottom Line||SEMrush|