- A 'Stream' Come True: Skyfire is now compatible with iOS 6 - Watch more video on iPad with Skyfire & iOS 6.
- Stability and Bug Fixes: Fix for a variety of bugs found in the last version of Skyfire 4.1.2. Please keep the feedback coming!
Another 'Flashy' video update from Skyfire!
Today we have released version 4.1.3 of Skyfire for iPad
What's New in version 4.1.3?
Skyfire for iPhone user? We have an update coming soon - Thank you for your patience!
It's terrific to see some external validation for the work we've done to date on our technology platforms, and just yesterday we learned that we've been shortlisted as a finalist for two prestigious global awards that are presented yearly by media groups that Skyfire and our customers follow very closely
Skyfire has made the finals for "Best New Service or App (Mobile)" for the Leading Lights 2012 awards presented by Light Reading. The service in question is our Skyfire Horizon browser extension platform, which we announced to the world last week, and which is gaining positive attention & coverage in many corners. Light Reading has pitted our browser extension platform, which allows operators to extend the mobile browser with a highly functional "toolbar" full of social and contextual extensions", up against innovations from big names like LinkedIn, Sprint, Nokia Siemens Networks, SK Telecom and Telefonica Digital. We're not only happy to be in their company, we're looking forward to hauling home the hardware on November 7th in Manhattan.
We're also a finalist for "Best Video Service Provider" in the ME Awards 2012, presented by Mobile Entertainment, a longtime UK-based magazine and website devoted to mobile content. This time Skyfire's Rocket Optimizer solution - which enables global wireless operators to optimize mobile video and multimedia in the cloud, and, as a result, flexibly manage policies that can unlock new services for their end users - is up against video services provided by QuickPlay Media, YuMe and Zeebox, among others. We'll find out what the ME judges think on November 29th in London, when the winners are announced.
Today we've announced our browser extension platform Skyfire Horizon to the world, and we're already getting some terrific press coverage on our launch. We have evolved the functionality once known as "Rocket Toolbar" into a true monitization platform for global wireless operators, while allowing these carriers the chance to offer their users an unparalleled mobile browsing experience. Browser extensions are commonplace on desktop browsers like Chrome and Firefox – think of all the cool add-ons you can bring to your desktop with just a few clicks - but only Skyfire Horizon brings these capabilities to mobile.
We've made a new 60-second video that shows it all in action – click on the play button to watch it now.
Our platform is already live with a top United States-based operator on recent Android devices. Their users can now share any page they happen to be on while browsing with the world via Twitter and Facebook, and easily link into sports, news and shopping without even leaving their current browsing session. We're especially happy to announce three Skyfire Horizon partnerships today that make the platform even more robust and valuable to consumers and operators alike:
QUIXEY: Skyfire Horizon's "Apps" button lets consumers easily find downloadable Apps that happen to be related to the page they're viewing. For example, when a user is reading ESPN on their device, Quixey (the engine powering Apps) will recommend ESPN ScoreCenter, WatchESPN, CBS Sports and other highly relevant apps. Now mobile users can easily find contextually relevant apps by simply clicking a button.
BLUE KANGAROO: Similarly, Skyfire Horizon also has an "Offers" button, powered by Blue Kangaroo, that dynamically looks for deals related to the page being visited. Browsing consumers can receive alertsabout the best, most relevant deals for the brands they’re visiting; recommendations of related offers to consider; and coupon codes that automatically appear at checkout. This makes shopping on a smartphone easier than it has ever been before.
READABILITY: Reading an article on your device, but want to save it for later – potentially to finish it on a PC or tablet? Skyfire Horizon now incorporates a Readability button that makes this exceptionally simple. One click, and it's saved in the cloud for users to access later in a clean, comfortable view that makes reading it even more pleasing than it was in its original setting.
Developers interested in partnering with Skyfire to deploy their own extensions on Horizon should definitely get in touch. We're building new functionality and multiple new content partners into the platform as we speak.
We're big proponents here of developing innovative, next-generation solutions that enable global mobile operators to successfully tackle the data crunch clogging their networks. It's not enough anymore to buy and deploy expensive, bulky inline solutions to optimize multimedia, as operators have increasingly realized. By embracing SDN (software-defined networking) and disruptive, cloud-based architecture, operators can more flexibly tackle multimedia optimization and quickly create new virtualized services ”in the cloud” to deploy to their end users. "Freedom" just might be an interesting framework here.
“Freedom” is what operators gain from deploying these new software-defined networking and cloud-based service architectures. SDN provides the freedom to monetize the network in new ways; freedom to imagine and then rapidly create new service offerings; freedom to manage more precisely the activity occurring on their networks; and freedom to expand to LTE scale while taming both CapEx and OpEx costs.
(1) Monetization: Operators increasingly will move to complex charging bundles and marketing offerings around QoE and selective content access. With a flexible, cloud-based policy enforcement option, these operators can quickly innovate and provision policy enforcement around different subscriber and publisher offerings. A flexible, scriptable policy engine can allow policy enforcement to select how to optimize multimedia traffic, whether by time of day; regions; particular device types; rate plans; or congestion conditions.
(2) Creation of new services: Operators need the freedom to imagine disruptive new services, and still sleep at night knowing that the network is safe and secure. By combining intelligent steering and DPI in the network with cloud compute farms, operators can experiment with novel offerings such as - for instance - an entry-level data plan with unlimited video, yet one which is capped at a ceiling bit rate and resolution, with upsell for limited periods of higher QoE. In an SDN world of the near future, where much of the operator network moves to inexpensive off-the-shelf compute and virtualization in the cloud, Skyfire is the only cloud-based, virtualizable optimization platform that is ready to plug into the SDN architectures of the future.
(3) Network Management: The new breed of cloud-based services also provides freedom from network bottlenecks, and allows operators to regain control over the floods of OTT data traffic surging across those networks. Understanding, and having the ability to optimize, all video formats streaming through networks – whether adaptive or mobile-friendly – is a new freedom available to operators who choose to deploy cloud-based services on top of their existing infrastructure.
(4) Reduced capacity planning/OpEx: Cloud-based optimization services take advantage of "five-nines" data center cluster uptimes, and yet enjoy “fail-open” architectures where at moments of downtime, network traffic flows without subscriber interruption, as it did before adding optimization. Cloud services exploit COTS hardware rather than proprietary appliances, and rely on intelligent steering likely already in network routers and load balancers (but which are under-utilized). Because SDN and cloud-based architecture is easily interoperable with intelligent steering capabilities that are already present in most networks, it drastically reduces the need for an operator to invest in new inline elements as traffic scales.
We're obviously not beyond invoking revolutionary jargon to illustrate our commitment to disruption and the busting of paradigms. To miss the wave of potential service creation and optimization opportunities as data and video traffic explodes is simply not in the Skyfire DNA.
Until a certain announcement of a certain new device last week, LTE networks in the US and worldwide had not been especially capacity-challenged. There's a common consensus forming that this will start to change when the iPhone 5 starts hitting operator networks like AT&T's and Verizon Wireless' next week (to say nothing of other popular LTE-enabled devices like Samsung's Galaxy S III). After the holidays and throughout 2013, the LTE pipes will begin to fill up with fat multimedia of all stripes – video, audio, and images – and the data speeds that we've been previously measuring with 1 or fewer users, close to metro center towers, will not last. Speeds of 6-12mbps will undoubtedly begin to drop.
LTE networks have 3 to 5 times the spectral efficiency of 3G – the fastest network supported by Apple devices before last week's announcement - and yet we're looking at a 26x growth in data projected through 2016. Operators can only keep up with this sort of customer-led demand (primarily for over-the-top video) by embracing next-generation solutions that can adapt and optimize multimedia in real time, on the fly. Operators will need to have the ability to deploy flexible, lightweight engines of enforcement that allow them to claw back control of their soon-to-be-increasingly burdened LTE networks, quickly straining in an OTT world.
The new breed of cloud-based services, such as Skyfire's Rocket Optimizer, provides operators newfound flexibility and freedom from network bottlenecks. Understanding, and having the ability to optimize, all video formats streaming through their networks – whether adaptive or mobile-friendly – is now available to operators who choose to deploy cloud-based services on top of their existing infrastructure. The alternative is simply spending, deploying, spending, and then deploying still more inline hardware throughout the breadth of the network in a race to keep up with users' entertainment consumption. We think it's an increasingly false choice, and just as the iPhone 5 is a step forward in disruptive, next-generation device design, so too is the new breed of cloud-based network architecture to support it.
Image Credit: REUTERS/Beck Diefenbach
We're happy to be displaying our Rocket Optimizer and Skyfire Horizon solutions at this year's TC3 (Telecom Council Carrier Connections) Event in Sunnyvale, CA, which is on at the Juniper Networks headquarters today and tomorrow (Wednesday/Thursday September 12-13). The TC3 Summit highlights the relationship between the companies building communication networks, with the people and ideas that are creating them. We'll be meeting wireless operators from all over the world, displaying our wares alongside other Silicon Valley companies and maybe even hauling home a SPIFFY Award this evening.
If you're attending, please make sure you stop by our table just outside the main speaking area. Our CEO, Jeff Glueck, and SVP of Sales & Marketing, Jason Guesman are standing by, iPads at the ready, to take your questions and provide a demo of what a disruptive, next-generation set of optimization and browsing solutions looks like.
Global mobile operators have faced an unprecedented explosion in data usage and OTT multimedia (especially video) traffic in recent years, and the growth curve of these services bends only one way: upward. The traditional approach to staying one step ahead of consumer usage has been hardware-based: add as many inline boxes as possible, distribute them throughout the network, and get them deployed as quickly as you can. This approach is expensive, time-consuming, and limiting on many fronts. Rather than providing freedom from network challenges, it tethers an operator to solutions from network technology’s past.
We think there's a better way, one that's both radically different and radically effective. So do our customers – including a major Tier 1 operator in North America who are currently deploying our Rocket Optimizer solution across their nationwide network. Rocket Optimizer brings breakthrough bandwidth savings to global wireless operators, with 4 times more capacity savings than alternative solutions, helping across RAN, backhaul, and spectrum costs and beyond.
Here are 3 key reasons our cloud-based multimedia optimization solution is ready to go today for operators looking to increase ROI, while ensuring the best possible quality of experience for their customers:
1. Higher Performance – Most Powerful Adaptation Engine, Broadest Coverage
Skyfire brings a breakthrough instant adaptation engine that can optimize nearly ANY video or image in milliseconds. The engine features the broadest format coverage (Flash, MP4, ABR and more) and delivers an average of 60% data savings on video and 50% on images. That means Skyfire can add roughly 60% capacity to any congested RAN or backhaul zone for the typical mobile network. This 60% boost is calculated during peak congestion; that is the time it most matters. Our heritage is in both video and mobile; this is what we do, and have done, since 2007.
2. Cloud Economics – Better ROI & TCO
Skyfire’s solution is easy to deploy, maintain, and scale across a broad network, thanks to its sophisticated blend of cloud compute power (private, public, or hybrid cloud), and intelligent routing already in the network. The architecture does not require the Operator to install an in-line proxy appliance for all network traffic, nor any device client. Easy!
3. Flexible Policy Management – Allows for Creation of New Business Models
Rocket Optimizer allows an Operator to apply highly granular optimization policies to ensure the best possible Quality of Experience (QoE), based on device type, subscriber profile, service plan and congestion. Policy-awareness means lower hardware and software costs, and the best user experience given existing capacity. The architecture provides a better fit with Net Neutrality guidelines for “reasonable network management”, and is more copyright law (DMCA) compliant than solutions that rely on long-term caching.
This is next-generation architecture for the networks of tomorrow, which thankfully can be realized immediately on the networks of today.
Skyfire shares our latest news, latest innovation and gets "social" on our Cloud Solutions for Mobility focused networking channels. Please take a moment to join us:
Skyfire Joins the 1 Billion Browsing Session Club
We’ve got a lot to be thankful for around the Skyfire Silicon Valley and London offices. Our vision to bring disruptive cloud solutions for mobility to the telecommunications space is truly coming to fruition with Skyfire’s Rocket technology ‘launching’ with carriers all over the world. With strong validation and adoption from the world’s leading Tier 1 carriers and service providers, you’ll soon see multiple products from Skyfire’s video and app extension framework expertise alleviating network congestion and enhancing user experience on next generation devices.
A key reason Skyfire continues to gain acceptance and approval with some of the world's largest telecom companies as a small, yet innovative and nimble start-up, is due to our incredible Skyfire app community. Over the past couple of years, more than 15 Million Skyfire users spanning the globe have helped to provide us with invaluable feedback, support and helped spread product awareness as we hone our multimedia optimization acumen - making Skyfire the leader in mobile video and data know-how, and in delivering the latest in consumer app innovation to mobile browsing.
Today, we're delighted to announce that Skyfire app users have now opened Skyfire more than 1 Billion times to embark on their mobile browsing sessions on iPhone, iPad and Android devices. This puts Skyfire Browser in an elite category of browsers, including desktop browsers, that have hit such an astounding number of sessions. You certainly can learn a lot on the way to 1 Billion, and we're applying these learnings in all sorts of new and disruptive ways. We want to take a moment to thank the Skyfire community for helping us reach this impressive and important milestone, because after all, those 1 billion sessions are your sessions.
Happy Browsing! - The Skyfire Team
We were always taught in school that to be "disruptive" was to be out of line, a distraction to others and generally difficult to be around. In 21st-century cloud-based networking, multimedia optimization and App creation, however, it's an honor to be counted as one of the disruptive leaders in these fields. That's why Skyfire was honored and happy to be included in this week's Business Insider roundup of "The Top 20 Most Disruptive Apps of All Time" for our Skyfire Browser on iOS and Android. Our game-changing Flash-video-rendering mobile browser was, and remains, an illustrative example of our desire to disrupt established and hidebound modes of thinking, and to ensure that operators and consumers who use our technology are on the leading edge of cloud-based solutions for their optimization and browsing needs.
Business Insider certainly has the Skyfire Browser in some pretty elite app company, too – Spotify, Shazam, HBO Go. Google Earth – even Angry Birds. Our browser, which remains a top seller in both the iPad/iPhone App Store and in Google Play, illustrates just how far you can get when disruptive DNA leads you to a "blow it up" mentality. Expensive inline hardware spread throughout an operator's network, when far greater efficiencies & savings can be easily realized by optimizing video and multimedia in the cloud? Blow it up. Vanilla mobile browsing lacks social media and app extensions, and keeps consumers from interacting with their favorite content the way they do on the web? Blow it up. Flash videos don't play on the iPhone? Blow it up.
The Skyfire Browser and our consumer products have been the laboratory and learning engines for our operator solutions that are rolling out all over the world. We're proud to be recognized by Business Insider for our disruptive innovation to date, and are brashly cocky and confident that you'll continue to see Skyfire recognized for game-changing solutions and services.