Timeline of content delivery networks

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This is a timeline of content delivery networks, attempting to describe its evolution, growth, and merge of organizations providing the service.

Big picture

Time period Development summary
1990s The original CDN is conceived in the late decade, a few short years after Tim Berners-Lee invent the world wide web.[1] Around the time, technical leaders realize that the internet could not handle the rapidly increasing level of network traffic without more intelligent methods for managing the flow of data.[2] Some technological innovations preceding the generation of CDNs, such as server farms, hierarchical caching, caching proxy deployment and so on, are crucial for paving the ground of the future infrastructure of CDNs.[3] Akamai Technologies, the first company to build a large-scale business around CDNs, is founded.
2000s Large-scale internet service providers start building their own CDN functionality, providing customized services. Thousands of companies start using CDNs.
2010s CDNs evolve from hundreds of megabits per second to tens of terabits per second, in terms of capacity, and from millions to billions to trillions of transactions and requests per day.[1]

Full timeline

Year Month and date Event type Details
1989 Prelude British computer scientist Tim Berners-Lee develops the World Wide Web while working at CERN.[4]
1998 January 5 Organization Level 3 Communications is founded. It would later provide CDN, enterprise software, and web hosting.[5][6]
1998 Organization CDN provider Rackspace is founded.[7]
1998 Organization Akamai Technologies is founded. It is the first company to build a large-scale business around CDNs.[2]
1998 Organization ChinaCache launches. It is the first CDN provider in China.[8]
1999 Organization Speedera Networks is founded. By 2008, it would be the largest CDN in Asia and the third largest CDN in the world after Akamai and Limelight Networks.[9]
1999 Product launch Akamai launches its first commercial product.[1]
1999 December Financial Akamai reaches an annual revenue of almost US$ 4 million and the company manages 3,000 servers across the globe.[1]
1990s Technology The Internet Content Adaptation Protocol (ICAP) is developed[10][11] to provide an open standard for connecting application servers.[12]
2000 Organization CDN service provider CDNetworks is founded.[13]
2001 September Crisis The September 11 attacks occur, spurring a sudden, unanticipated mass of Internet users trying to access news sites, simultaneously. This causes severe caching problems, and finally more money invested in developing CDN hosting to provide protection from the flash crowds for the websites.[3]
2001 Evolution Broadband Services Forum (BSF), ICAP forum, Internet Streaming Media Alliance organizations start taking initiatives to develop standards for delivering broadband content, streaming rich media content – video, audio, and associated data – over the Internet.[3]
2001 July 1 Organization CDN provider Limelight Networks is founded.[14][15]
2002 Organization CDN provider CacheFly is founded. It would develop the world's first TCP-anycast based CDN.[16]
2002 Organization American CDN provider Imperva launches.[17]
2002 Growth Large-scale internet service providers start building their own CDN functionality, providing customized services.[3]
2004 Growth More than 3000 companies are found to use CDNs, spending more than US$20 million monthly.[3]
2004 Product launch Coral Content Distribution Network is initially released.[15]
2005 Growth CDN revenue for both streaming video and Internet radio is estimated to grow at 40%.[3]
2005 Growth The combined commercial market value for streaming audio, video, streaming audio and video advertising, download media and entertainment is estimated at between US$ 385 million to $ 452 million in the year.[3]
2005 Organization Medianova launches. It is a leading CDN service provider in Turkey, Europe, Middle East and Africa markets.[18]
2006 August Organization CDN provider EdgeCast Networks (later Verizon Digital Media Services) is founded.[19]
2008 Product launch Amazon CloudFront is launched as a CDN that integrates with other Amazon web services.[3][15]
2008 July 26 Literature Content Delivery Networks by Rajkumar Buyya, Mukaddim Pathan, and Athena Vakali is published.[20]
2009 July Organization Cloudflare launches and starts offering content delivery, security and analytics.[15]
2009 November Organization CDN provider Incapsula is founded.[21]
2009 Organization CDN provider MaxCDN is launched in California.[22]
2011 Product launch AT&T announces their new cloud-based Content Delivery Network that enables content to flow from its 38 data centers around the world to reduce transit and latency times.[3]
2011 February 15 Organization Australian cloud-based CDN company MetaCDN is founded.[23]
2011 February Organization Indian telecommunications company Tata Communications acquires BitGravity, a US-based CDN provider, as part of a strategy to enhance its global CDN.[24]
2011 March Organization American CDN provider Fastly launches.[15][25]
2011 October 1 Organization CDN77.com launches. It has 30 data centers available on five continents.[26][27]
2012 Product launch QUANTIL launches their CDN services.[28]
2012 Organization CDN provider BootstrapCDN is founded.[29]
2012 March Organization CDN provider SwiftServe launches.[30]
2012 Organization CDN provider Kingsoft Cloud is founded.[31]
2012 Product launch JSDelivr is initially released. It is a free multi-CDN for open source projects hosted on npm.[32]
2012 In-house CDN Netflix announces Netflix Open Connect CDN as a response to the ever-increasing scale of Netflix streaming.[33]
2012 Growth Akamai’s stock revenue is reported to be US$ 345.32 million.[3]
2012 Growth Cisco projects Video CDN revenues at around US$ 1 billion with growth for 2013 between 40% and 45%, and the complete market to grow from $6 billion to $12 billion by 2015.[3]
2013 Mid-year Organization Leaseweb launches its CDN service.[34]
2013–2019 Growth The Middle East and Africa CDN market is estimated to grow from US$ 0.18 billion to US$ 0.45 billion in the period, while the Brazilian CDN market is estimated to grow from US$ 88.25 million to US$ 192.4 million.[7]
2014 July In-house CDN Apple activates in-house CDN, and begins offloading traffic onto it.[35][36]
2015 April Organization CDN provider BaishanCloud is founded.[37] It is one of the fastest growing companies in the CDN space.[38]
2015 Organization BelugaCDN launches as a pay-as-you-go, low-cost CDN provider.[39]
2015 Organization American CDN provider StackPath is founded.[40][41][15]
2016 March In-house CDN On the eves of the global release of Season 2 of Marvel's Daredevil to 190 countries, Netflix announces moving all streaming global traffic to its Netflix Open Connect CDN.[33]
2016 July Merge StackPath acquires MaxCDN, among other companies, merging with the CDN developer.[42]
2016 Growth Akamai posts US$ 2.3 billion in revenues with a market cap of more than $10 billion.[15]
2017 July 20 Literature Content Delivery Networks: Fundamentals, Design, and Evolution by Dom Robinson is published.[43]
2017 Growth The CDN market reaches an estimated $7.5 billion dollars.[1]
2018 Growth The CDN market is valued at US$ 9.24 billion in the year.[44]
2018 January Expansion Verizon extends the reach of its CDN to South Africa, Mexico, and France, now spanning over 56 countries for the company.[45]
2019 Growth According to globaldots.com 2017 publication, the CDN Market is estimated to grow to US$ 12.16 billion by 2019, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 26.3% from 2014 to 2019.[7]
2024 Growth According to marketsandmarkets.com publication in May 2019, the CDN market is expected to reach a value of US$ 22.1 billion by 2024.[44]

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See also

External links


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 "Three Ways CDNs Have Changed Since Akamai's First Content Delivery Network". medium.com. Retrieved 24 June 2019. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 "Content Delivery and Distribution Networks (CDN)". lifewire.com. Retrieved 24 June 2019. 
  3. 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 "The History of Content Delivery Networks (CDN)". globaldots.com. Retrieved 24 June 2019. 
  4. "The birth of the Web". home.cern. Retrieved 1 July 2019. 
  5. "Level 3 Communications". crunchbase.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019. 
  6. "Level 3". cdnplanet.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019. 
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 "Content Delivery Network Explained". globaldots.com. Retrieved 5 July 2019. 
  8. "ChinaCache". cdnplanet.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019. 
  9. "Who Is CDNetworks?". networkworld.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019. 
  10. Elson, J., Cerpa, A.: "Internet Content Adaptation Protocol (ICAP)," April 2003.
  11. ICAP Forum
  12. "Content Delivery Network (CDN)". firstsiteguide.com. Retrieved 24 June 2019. 
  13. "Who Is CDNetworks?". networkworld.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019. 
  14. "Limelight Networks". crunchbase.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019. 
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 15.3 15.4 15.5 15.6 "Discontent and disruption in the world of content delivery networks". techcrunch.com. Retrieved 5 July 2019. 
  16. "CacheFly". cdnplanet.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019. 
  17. "Imperva". crunchbase.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019. 
  18. "Medianova". crunchbase.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019. 
  19. "EdgeCast Networks". crunchbase.com. Retrieved 1 July 2019. 
  20. "Content Delivery Networks". books.google.com.ar. Retrieved 1 July 2019. 
  21. "Meet Alon Alter: On Growing a Global Cloud Services Business". imperva.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019. 
  22. "MaxCDN". crunchbase.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019. 
  23. "MetaCDN". crunchbase.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019. 
  24. "Tata Communications completes acquisition of BitGravity - Livemint". www.livemint.com. Retrieved 2017-05-10. 
  25. "Fastly Launches Streaming Media Service". fastly.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019. 
  26. "CDN77.com". crunchbase.com. Retrieved 24 June 2019. 
  27. "13 content delivery networks to speed up your website". mashable.com. Retrieved 24 June 2019. 
  28. "QUANTIL". cdnplanet.com. Retrieved 1 July 2019. 
  29. "BootstrapCDN". bootstrapcdn.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019. 
  30. "SwiftServe". crunchbase.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019. 
  31. "Kingsoft Cloud". cdnplanet.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019. 
  32. "jsDelivr". producthunt.com. Retrieved 24 June 2019. 
  33. 33.0 33.1 "Netflix moves all global traffic to Open Connect CDN Read more: Netflix moves all global traffic to Open Connect CDN". rapidtvnews.com. Retrieved 7 July 2019. 
  34. "Leaseweb". cdnplanet.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019. 
  35. "Apple's in-house CDN efforts spell trouble for Akamai as infrastructure biz warns of losses". appleinsider.com. Retrieved 8 July 2019. 
  36. "Apple activates in-house content delivery network, begins migrating content downloads - report". appleinsider.com. Retrieved 8 July 2019. 
  37. "BaishanCloud". crunchbase.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019. 
  38. "BaishanCloud". cdnplanet.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019. 
  39. "BelugaCDN". cdnplanet.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019. 
  40. "StackPath Launches Next Generation of Platform and Services". stackpath.com. Retrieved 5 July 2019. 
  41. "StackPath". cdnplanet.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019. 
  42. Lunden, Ingrid. "Security-as-a-service startup StackPath nabs $180M, 4 acquisitions including MaxCDN". techcrunch.com. Retrieved 5 July 2019. 
  43. "Content Delivery Networks: Fundamentals, Design, and Evolution". wiley.com. Retrieved 1 July 2019. 
  44. 44.0 44.1 "CONTENT DELIVERY NETWORK (CDN) MARKET - GROWTH, TRENDS, AND FORECAST (2019 - 2024)". mordorintelligence.com. Retrieved 5 July 2019. 
  45. "Global Content Delivery Network Market 2018 to Boom $29.48 Billion Value by 2023 at a CAGR of 26.1% – Orbis Research". reuters.com. Retrieved 5 July 2019.