Apple negotiating paid interconnect deals with ISPs for their own Content Delivery Network

“In February I blogged about a new group formed inside of Apple last year, tasked with building out their own CDN to deliver Apple software updates, apps and other Apple related content,” Dan Rayburn reports for StreamingMedia. “Since my post, Apple has been very busy with their build out deploying a lot of boxes running Apache Traffic Server and buying a ton of transit, co-location, wavelengths and other infrastructure services. Their CDN is quickly growing, and it won’t be long before we start seeing a portion of their content getting delivered from their new CDN.”

“As part of their build out, Apple is currently negotiating paid interconnection deals with some of the largest ISPs in the U.S. I’m not going to disclose which ISPs they are talking to and what deals they have already done, but it’s interesting to note that with all the talk lately of net neutrality, peering and interconnect relationships, Apple isn’t out in the market making any complaints,” Rayburn reports. “While Netflix has used the media, consumers and lawmakers to try and argue that CDNs should get as much peering as they want, at no charge, Apple doesn’t seem to agree with that sentiment. If they do, they certainly aren’t complaining in any public forum.”

“Much like Microsoft, Google, Facebook, Pandora, Ebay and other content owners that have already built out their own CDNs, Apple appears to see paid interconnect deals as simply part of the costs associated with building out their own CDN network,” Rayburn reports. “To date, no other content owner or content syndicator that has built out their own CDN has complained of the current business models or argued about doing mutually beneficial interconnect deals between networks. If interconnect deals are such a problem in the industry, or a threat as many make it out to be, you don’t see the ones who actually have to pay for these deals complaining, other than Netflix… So it’s just another example you have to look at when some make the statement that paid interconnect deals are bad for everyone involved. It seems that other than Netflix, those companies paying and signing these deals don’t seem to have a problem with them.”

Read more in the full article here.


  1. Why would anyone be surprised Apple would cave to the Cable nets? First, they are and always been about margins. We do and will pay accordingly and Apple cares not one way the other about the low end or accessibility. That’s our problem, otherwise it cuts into margins. Period. They long ago eschewed volume over their current model.

    But, and a big but here (like Jo Lo big), they could be paying for lines to off-set the Cables’ loss if they ever allowed Apple to offer ala cart apps for the ten to twenty channels most of us watch. In the NR, we pay the same – or more. If ever true ala cart is offered, then Internet prices soars to offset their losses. Apple doesn’t give a shit one way the other about saving anybody a dime. Get into reading, or DVD from the library, or Mother Nature, cause costs are never going down.

    Volume volume volume and low prices are the way to go. But virtually everyone has abandoned that principle. (One can argue Amazon uses the model, but they actually produce nothing, forcing the real producers to sacrifice their profits for inclusion to Bezos’ Marist model.)

  2. Funny how this is being turned into a Net Neutrality issue, when CDNs have been around for a VERY LONG TIME. Anyone ever hear of Akamai? The largest CDN in the world. Apple uses (and even owned a stake in the company) for iTunes. CDNs aren’t about paying more for larger bandwidth, they have always been about setting up end-to-end connections to maintain control over the delivery of your content to your customers. This includes making distribution and delivery of content more efficient, which helps keep bandwidth usage at a minimum. Now that Apple is building all these data centers around the country, it only makes sense for them to also start building their own CDN.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.