No one likes a slow Internet, every user would prefer fast downloads. We all upgraded from dial up connections to high speed internet, and now we pay extra for connections that promise us quicker loading times. But only part of achieving fast downloads is on the user. Content provider’s can transmit data with bottlenecks that render our expensive connections moot.
The issue of fast downloads (and loading in general) is part of the net neutrality issue. Not only does a user need a strong Internet connection, but the CDNs and ISPs pushing the information to the end-user need to be supplying enough bandwidth to allow for the fast downloads. If the courts rule in favor of net neutrality, then ISPs will not be able to create new, fast lanes for certain sites. This means that delivery speeds on the content provider side will largely continue to depend on hosting and CDN services.
Content providers hire CDNs to speed up data delivery (i.e. allow for fast downloads). Using a whole bunch of complex systems, including servers, caching and others, these CDNs send content to the ISPs and help get users the requested files quickly. The main alternative to this is to transfer files using P2P technologies. This requires users to install a BitTorrent or other software, and then allows them to transmit data directly, without a server.
The different styles of content distribution have different pros and cons. This is one of the biggest arguments for a hybrid network. Since both strategies optimize and struggle at different times, this dual protocol system improves transfer speeds and creates the ideal environment for fast downloads.
At Peer5, we created the very first hybrid network by adding a P2P layer on top of a client-server system to create fast downloads for our customers. Thanks to WebRTC and other new technologies, we were able to build this system to work within a user’s browser. To read more about how Peer5 creates fast downloads, click here