21 Feb 2013
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Who is Sandvine and why should ISPs care?

Cisco acquired a specialist software vendor called PixStream in 2000 but as the market soured a year later, the company closed the division.

A core team of about 30 staff members from this division subsequently left Cisco and started Sandvine, a specialist vendor based in Canada which sells solutions to telcos.

While most of it's customers are in North and South America, the vendor is focused on the Asia Pacific region for further growth.

Selling both hardware and software tools which ISPs and Telcos use to manage customer internet accounts, one of the first solutions Sandvine works with ISPs on is a traffic analysis tool.

This informs the ISP how their consumers are using data with an example being that the ISPs are playing a lot of online games or that YouTube use is below average.

ISPs then use this information to target marketing programmes and optimise network performance.

It's traffic shaping solution can help ISPs prioritise network traffic, through prioritising streaming video over less time critical services like email.

Lastly but certainly not least is a collection of tools focused on billing, including reminding customers about their data usage by text or email or another for easily Zero rating services like Facebook.

While Sandvine is a relatively small organisation with US$90 million turnover and approximately 500 employees, its solutions help generate billions of dollars for it's ISP and telco customers annually.

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