A blockchain project says that it is aiming to shake up content delivery networks (CDNs) — and break the monopoly that has been established by the three main providers: Cloudflare, Amazon Web Services, and Akamai.
According to Meson, these three companies share 89% of customers between them, but the high prices they charge can often be off-putting to small and medium-sized businesses.
One of the biggest challenges for online platforms is ensuring that traffic to their site can be scaled up at periods of peak demand — and CDNs play a crucial role in ensuring that online content loads quickly. With research suggesting that many users quickly lose patience after waiting for as little as three seconds, offering a speedy service (without compromising on quality) can be critical. Doing so can be difficult for streaming platforms, who are often confronted by high bandwidth costs.
To deliver the acceleration that SMEs need, Meson aims to tap into a plentiful resource of unused internet bandwidth — capacity that lies unused in schools, institutions and in the server resources taken out by individual developers. Indeed, opportunities can even exist in our homes, where our bandwidth goes unused for at least eight hours a day as we rest. (And even when we are using our internet connections, our activities often fail to make full use of upstream and downstream speeds.)
How Meson works
Meson aims to tackle these issues by allowing ordinary consumers and businesses to contribute their idle bandwidth, gaining crypto tokens in exchange. From here, small and medium-sized companies can get access to dependable acceleration servers at a much lower cost than the prices charged by CDN giants — creating a “virtuous circle.”
The team behind this project say creating a closed loop business model is crucial for achieving commercial viability — delivering a valuable service and securing growth that doesn’t depend on constant speculation and a token’s price appreciating.
Four key principles have been adhered to in designing Meson. It’s intended to be simple, open, modular and easy to use — meaning that end users only need to double-click on a program in Windows to make full use of what the blockchain platform has to provide. The team acknowledges that those with spare server space may only be tempted to get involved if it takes minimal effort to set up, and doesn’t result in any additional costs.
According to Meson, one of the biggest downsides associated with BitTorrent lied in how users would close the software after their downloads had completed — all because there was no incentive for them to keep the software open and help others. The tokenization introduced by Meson can help provide this incentive — meaning that they’ll be much more inclined to stay on the network.
An upbeat future
In its whitepaper, Meson cites a staggering statistic that suggests just one second of service disruption would cost Amazon an estimated $1.6 billion in sales — and warns that outages can also be incredibly harmful for the SMEs that it is aiming to support.
“We are in a great era of continuous technological advancement and progress. As more and more things obtain an information and data side, the demand for better internet speed and capacity has grown higher and higher,” the whitepaper added.
Meson’s seed round investors included Mask Network, Youbi Capital, SevenX, Incuba Alpha, Paka, Zonff Partners and Kernel Ventures.
Looking ahead, Meson aims to become a premier layer-two solution that achieves high throughput without sacrificing network security — offering a refreshing alternative to layer-one projects such as IPFS, Filecoin and Arweave.
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