Vasona Networks raises $14.6M to make streaming video viewing smoother
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Featured Image Credit: Vasona Networks website

Because, cats

The San Jose-based Vasona Networks announced on Wednesday that they have closed their Series C funding round, pulling in $14.6 million in new financing.

NexStar Partners joined previous investors Bessemer Venture Partners and New Venture Partners in raising the capital for the round that brings the company’s total funding to a sizable $48 million.

Vasona Networks was co-founded in 2010 by CEO Biren Sood, Nery Strasman and Joe Babic, both of whom have since left the company. Their offerings address the growing problem of how best to manage bandwidth among the users of a network. Streaming video viewing is now far more common, drawing intensely on the limited resources of the service provider and leading to congestion that results in a poor user experience.

Vasona’s software, which they call SmartAIR 1000, sits on the edge network and automatically allocates bandwidth to users according to their needs.

If for example a person just has their phone in their pocket, all they really need as far as bandwidth is enough to update their emails and other more passive actions. However if a user is watching one of those amazing Tasty videos, then they will need faster speeds to have the best possible experience. The last thing you want is slow internet while watching those magicians of the kitchen putting together a pot roast.

In a sense, SmartAIR works like an air traffic controller, watching out for congestion on the runways and directing the bandwidth to where it is most needed, all unnoticed by the end users.

Vasona Network's delivery system between the Radio Access Network and the users. Image Credit: Vasona Networks

Vasona Network’s delivery system between the Radio Access Network and the users. Image Credit: Vasona Networks

They have also introduced their SmartVISION product to provide insights on network performance and user experience to help their clients.

Up to this point, they have worked with five of the largest mobile providers across the globe, and have begun operations with Telefonica UK’s O2 system. They are in the process of working with new partners.

Vasona has had a busy year thus far. In addition to this round, they announced back in February that they will be virtualizing all of their mobile network functionality in support of global operator Radio Access Network transformation efforts. They have also begun work around network function virtualization (NFV) and mobile edge computing (MEC).

Vasona Networks say that they are the first market entrant with an edge application controller approach to mobile congestion management. Regarding their competition, they note that they compete with other relevant offerings from major mobile infrastructure vendors like Huawei and Nokia Siemens Networks, as well as emergent vendors in spaces like probe+DPI combinations like Sandvine and optimizers like Flash Networks.

In looking to the future, Vasona plans to add 15-20 new team members in its Tel Aviv R&D center for 2016, with that hiring underway since the start of the year. Along with increased movement focused on their product and areas of interest like the edge computing movement and virtualization, the company says that they are looking to expand in markets such as Latin America that are struggling with congestion.

Video expected to be 80% of all consumer internet traffic in three years

According to Cisco’s Visual Networking Index (VNI) report from May, they believe that video will comprise 80% of all consumer internet traffic by 2019.

Even if this report falls short, it means that streaming video will continue to take up more and more bandwidth, requiring better management of the overall system.

So while expanding infrastructure in the form of additional cell towers and other means of providing comprehensive coverage will be necessary, along with solutions like Beamr who work to reduce the size of video files while maintaining high resolution, automated traffic controllers like Vasona’s SmartAIR will help to keep the cat and food prep videos coming.

Disclaimer: The author is a huge fan of cats and food, but then again, who on the internet isn’t?

Featured Image Credit: Vasona Networks website

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Gabriel Avner

About Gabriel Avner

Gabriel has an unhealthy obsession with new messaging apps, social media and pretty much anything coming out of Apple. An experienced security and conflict consultant, he has written for The Diplomatic Club, the Marine War College, and covers military affairs with TLV1 radio. He mostly enjoys reading articles wherever his ADD leads him to and training Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. EEED 44D4 B8F4 24BE F77E 2DEA 0243 CBD1 3F7C F4B6

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