Citrix is seeking to build faster, sturdier bridges between mobile wireless companies and cloud services. The company announced today that it is acquiring Santa Clara, Calif.-based Bytemobile for an undisclosed amount to make it happen.
Bytemobile is the maker of the Unison Platform and the T-Series Adaptive Traffic Management System, which are deployed in the core of mobile networks. They provide telecom operators with networking analysis and management capabilities, including video and web optimization, traffic management, content caching and packet inspection.
According to Citrix, Bytemobile’s technology handles over 20 petabytes of data traffic across customer networks each day and affects more than 2 billion subscribers. The company’s market reach and product portfolio opens new doors for Citrix as more mobile devices access the Internet and connect to the cloud.
Cisco’s Visual Networking Index forecast for Global Mobile Data Traffic shows that mobile traffic will outpace all other types of Internet traffic during the next few years. Mobile traffic will grow to 130 exabytes a year by 2016, according to the networking giant’s projections.
In February, Doug Webster, senior director of SP Marketing at Cisco, told InternetNews.com’s Sean Michael Kerner, “We’re projecting overall growth of mobile traffic for the forecast period of 2011 to 2016 to increase 18 fold.” Driving that demand are a ever-faster and more powerful mobile devices, including tablets like the latest Apple iPad, which now ships with 4G networking support.
According to Webster, “Two years ago we didn’t have tablets as a category and now tablets are the fastest growing devices of all the devices we track.” He added, “Traffic from tablets will increase 62 fold during the forecast period.”
Clearly, Citrix sees a big market opportunity in helping mobile network operators manage that explosive growth.
In a statement announcing the purchase, Klaus Oestermann, group vice president and general manager of cloud networking for Citrix, said, “The cloud and mobile revolutions are rapidly converging, and mobile operators are at the heart of this convergence. With the integration of Bytemobile technology, products and intellectual capital, Citrix will be uniquely positioned to be a leader in the global mobile data and video infrastructure market in the LTE era.”
The deal follows a cloud networking partnership that the companies embarked on earlier this year. They collaborated on the Bytemobile T1100 Traffic Director, which leverages Citrix NetScaler technology to boost application delivery over mobile networks.
In joining forces, Citrix wants to help mobile network operators reduce costs and keep customers happy before widespread cloud computing really starts taking its toll on their networks.
Oestermann adds, “The benefits to network operators and their subscribers include faster, more efficient, more reliable, and more manageable networks; higher performance resulting in better service and a better user experience; and scalability to process growing volumes of data traffic at a much lower cost.”
Citrix and Bytemobile expect the deal to close during the third quarter of 2012. Once that milestone is met, plans call for Bytemobile to become part of the Citrix Cloud Networking group.
Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at InternetNews.com, the news service of the IT Business Edge Network, the network for technology professionals. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.