Proactive Device Detection
Other CDNs and Image Management platforms claim to have image acceleration solutions. But when you ask the right questions and look under the hood, they do not have the key ingredient to deliver a truly different CDN service. That key ingredient is proactive device detection. Device detection enables ScientiaMobile to deliver a Smart Bytes image payload.
ScientiaMobile’s ImageEngine is unique because we are the industry leader in device detection. Our WURFL device detection drives 83% of all device analytics on the Web. By proactive, we mean that based on the initial HTTP request – before anything is sent to the device – we know with 99.9% accuracy the device model and its critical attributes: browser, screen resolution width and height, DPR, operating system, support for more efficient file formats like webp, jpeg xr, jpeg 2000. In real-time, we run this logic at the edge of the CDN network, and process right-sized images or pull them immediately from cache.
CDNs and Image Management tools lack proactive device detection to drive their image resizing systems. Instead, they use a combination of two approaches for device detection:
- Client Hints
The Downside of Media Queries
And media query results are problematic. Let’s say you query the screen resolution and it returns resolution width of 1920 pixels. Pretty big screen. Must be a desktop, right? Wrong. These days, many phones – like the Google Pixel – have screens with over 1920 pixels. If you rely on these queries and breakpoints, then you will often send images that are larger than they need to be for smartphones.
Client Hints. Not Ready for Prime Time Yet
Client hints allows developers to specify the dimensions of an image based on what the browser finds in its viewport. It is good system, and that is why we have built support for Client Hints into ImageEngine. Unfortunately, only Chrome and Opera support it right now. And it also requires more work from the page developer to get the server side ready. So when CDNs or Image Managers rely on Client Hints for their resizing logic, only 6% of image requests actually use it. In other words, most of the time, images will be larger than needed.
ImageEngine’s CDN Gets Images To Your Customers Faster
So, do we really need another CDN? Yes we do. We need a smart CDN that breaks the business model and delivers dramatic performance improvements. One that understands the mobile user base – which is now more than 50% in most countries – and delivers superior performance. That is what the world needs now.