Akamai Aqua Ion designed to improve web experience for end-users

Akamai is attempting to "redefine" the web experience for end-users with its new Aqua Ion optimization platform.

Akamai has introduced a new platform comprised of a mix of solutions designed to meet situational performance requirements while trying to improve the overall web experience for end-users.

Dubbed Aqua Ion, the solutions based off both some of Akamai's acquisitions in the last year as well as organic research and development initiatives.

The motivation for Aqua Ion comes from what Akamai describes as the "difficult challenge of providing the optimal user experience to customers operating on an increasing variety of devices and networks." Akamai argues that a "one-size-fits-all" strategy for delivering web-based content is near impossible when you consider situational factors such as all of the different devices, browsers and operating systems on the market today.

While some might argue that HTML5-based apps is the closest (and currently best) solution to solving the one-size-fits-all problem, Aqua Ion has been designed to approach with a set of optimization and mobile-specific enhancements that should blanket a wider range of use cases and situational factors.

Most of these enhancements focus on speed, which could in turn shape up (or ruin) the user experience nearly on its own.

One example is front-end optimization in reflection of both real-time conditions as well as in-network settings, which should reduce the amount of byte and HTTP requests, thus speeding up load times.

Other examples include adaptive image compression when network connections are bad along with the integration of Akamai Instant, which retrieves the next pages most likely to be requested based on origin analytics.

Akamai's overall goal with this solution set is to deliver single web pages better and faster to as many users on as many different platforms as possible without distorting the experience while also personalizing. It's a tough task, surely, but this is essentially where the web (both on desktops and mobile) is going.


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