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What Is Internet Peering, and Why Is It Beneficial?

March 27, 2014  |  Written by Ben Gonyea, Vice President, Product Management

The world of data center services is full of terms that can get very confusing if you’re not familiar with the industry. From power density to carrier neutrality and everywhere in between, keeping up on these terms can seem like a job of its own.

Here at Telx, however, we want to make your entry into the world of data center services as painless as possible—and that includes talking you through the terminology that’s present all around the industry.

One term you may hear frequently is Internet peering. But what is it, and why is it beneficial to a business?

Put simply, Internet peering is the interconnection of networks, allowing those networks to exchange traffic. While the actual science and process behind peering is a bit more complicated than that, it all really boils down to a connection of networks and the exchange and sharing of data.

Here at Telx, we do this through our Telx Internet Exchange (TIE) (How Can Internet Exchange Help My Business?) which allows ISPs, content and gaming providers, enterprises, and others to quickly and easily exchange IP traffic. TIE is a neutral, privately-owned and managed Internet Exchange Point, or IXP.

Peering has many benefits, especially compared to the alternative of purchasing transit and paying another company to carry your traffic. Some of the benefits of peering include:

  • Efficiency: Peering increases efficiency by reducing redundancies and improving network performance. It creates a better, more open Internet, and ultimately is a great way to give your end users better service.
  • Resiliency: By connecting to TIE, you increase your network resilience. You’re no longer limited to one ISP or one network which is responsible for distributing all of your traffic; by spreading out your network, you end up with a more resilient and robust distribution solution.
  • Cost-effectiveness: Peering is much more cost-effective than paying another company to carry your traffic—you can reach a much broader ecosystem with peering than you would be able to otherwise. What’s more, Internet Exchanges also tend to be hubs for competition, once again often driving prices down and giving better service to your end users.
  • Speed and monitoring: Peering has the added benefit of incredible speed. Through TIE, customers can connect and peer at speeds ranging from 1 Gbps to 10+ Gbps. With Telx, you’re also able to monitor metrics so that you can see what performance you’re getting through our exchange.

Internet exchanges like TIE can connect you to ISPS, to enterprises, to customers around the world, and more, enabling the growth of your business in ways not possible before peering existed. The ultimate source of efficiency and network expansion, peering is a great benefit to your business that you should seriously consider adding if you haven’t already.

Want to learn more about peering or Internet exchanges and how they can help your business? Connect with us via the contact page of our site, or by Facebook or Twitter and let us know—we’d be more than happy to answer your questions!