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NetConnect: The Ultimate Peering Solution

Netrality's direct peering solution, NetConnect, is an IP Transit Service providing direct peering to over 5,294 networks worldwide.

America Online (AOL) was a web portal and online service provider established in NYC in 1983. AOL was the pioneer of the Internet. I could hear it now. Can you? The dial-up sound — internet heaven came via the phone line connecting you and your business to the Internet. It was great…then. But wouldn’t fare well today.


According to Statista, in 2021, there are over 4.66 billion active internet users worldwide, which consists of almost 60% of the global population. With this increasing number of users, enterprises need bandwidth, speed, to get an edge over their competitors. Today, the Internet consists of over 25,000 independent systems that route traffic. Peering is how these systems interact and exchange traffic, allowing data to flow from one end-user over the Internet to another.


Types of Peering

There are four types of peering: public, direct (private), partial, and paid.

In this blog, I will be discussing public and direct peering. Public peering has been the primary method for exchanging traffic. It is made through an Internet Exchange Point (IXP), where one network peers with many other networks through one connection. Once the connection is made, networks can establish or remove interconnections to other networks.

Netrality’s direct peering solution, NetConnect, is an IP Transit Service powered by Unitas Global. IP Transit is a service in which an internet service provider (ISP) allows traffic to travel through their network to its destination. Direct peering is when two or more networks agree to exchange their traffic at a common private facility. This exchange of traffic is free since both sides are getting the same value – equal exchange – out of the partnership. Most of the Internet traffic today is private peering connections at colocation facilities like Netrality Data Centers.


Benefits of Direct Peering

NetConnect offers an abundance of peering opportunities for peak performance. It provides direct peering to over 5,294 other autonomous networks for one-hop access to SaaS providers, content providers, and broadband networks. It directly links to providers like Google, AWS, and Cloudflare guaranteeing the route according to bandwidth, providing fast access to applications and services — greatly improving the end-user experience.

NetConnect connects to Tier 1 and Tier 2 Internet providers and public Internet Exchanges. Tier 1 internet service providers are exclusive in that they agree to share routes only with other Tier 1 providers. Having Tier 1 and Tier 2 access ensures there are multiple routes to every destination. Our direct peering solution is continuously monitored, reviewed, and analyzed to understand traffic flows, improve routes, and explore new network connections.


The Differentiator

Many SaaS providers, content providers, and broadband networks are not directly connected to Tier 1 backbone networks. Instead, they are connected to Tier 2 or 3 networks and “lie in wait” for “availability” in a Tier 1 network. Why is that? Bandwidth is not only purchased from Tier 1 providers, but they are the ones that control the traffic between each destination that is outside of Tier 1 resulting in higher latency, slower traffic, decreasing end-user experience.

NetConnect’s IP network was built to bypass Tier 1 when possible, not hand traffic off to other networks, but to move traffic directly to its destination, with the least number of networks and interconnections.


The Takeaway

Netrality’s data centers have software-defined networking (SDN) architecture with a rich ecosystem of cloud service providers (CSP), internet exchanges (IX), and networks that utilize application programming interfaces (APIs) to communicate, manage, and direct network traffic. All traffic is routed through a centralized server with cross-connect capabilities to decrease latency and increase efficiencies and reliability.

NetConnect utilizes real-time network availability assessment, orchestrated service delivery, diverse intelligent routing, and proactive end-to-end management to connect businesses to where they need to go. It provides customers with better control, maximizing the bandwidth of their internet connections — guaranteeing traffic the fastest route to their destination. NetConnect is available in all our interconnected colocation facilities in Chicago, Houston, Kansas City, Philadelphia, St. Louis, and Indianapolis.


Interested in learning more? Contact us today!