CBS Interactive is the premier online content network for information and entertainment. Its brands dive deep into the things people care most about across news, sports, entertainment, technology and business. With hundreds of millions of unique visitors from around the world each month, CBS Interactive is a global top 10 Web property and the largest premium content network online.
“We were able to reduce our previous colocation costs by about two-thirds, and we are benefiting from a state-of-the-art facility.”
Stephen Comstock, Sr. Director of IT Operations
CBS Interactive is a premier online content network for information and entertainment. Its leading brands include CNET, GameSpot, CBSNews.com, CBS.com, CBSSports.com, TV.com, and CHOW. With hundreds of millions of unique visitors from around the world each month, CBS Interactive was quickly running out of space and required a high-density, scalable data center solution. As a global top 10 Web property, CBS Interactive not only required a partner that could quickly scale, they required 100% Service Level Agreement while maximizing energy and operational efficiencies.
CBS Interactive covers large events that attract big audiences to its sites including CES, the world’s largest consumer technology show, and E3, the premier show for the gaming industry, as well as breaking news that attracts substantial audiences around the world.
“Based on the event or breaking news, the traffic on CBS Interactive properties can peak in aggregate of 15 to 18 GB per second,” said Stephen Comstock, Sr. Director of IT Operations at CBS Interactive. “In searching for a new colocation provider, density was one of our top criterions to help support our customer-facing applications.”
CBS Interactive selected IO on the basis of its location, services in IO Phoenix, enterprise-class physical infrastructure, and deep operational experience. Admittedly, CBS Interactive is not in the business of managing data center infrastructure. “When comparing IO’s cost with a data center buildout, we could not build a data center of the same class, efficiency and reliability. By utilizing IO’s core services, we are allowed to focus on our customers and our core competencies,” said Comstock.
IO provides the staff, knowledge and experience required to operate an always-on data center. Many times, these resources are not available within a company. And for businesses looking for peace of mind that their IT environment is always-on, IO offers a 100% uptime SLA on key infrastructure elements, including power, cooling, fire detection and suppression, and access control.
Comstock added, “With the reduced risk of natural disasters, availability of economical power, and improved energy utilization, IO Phoenix became an attractive option compared to our previous location.”
IO Phoenix, in addition to being located in an incredibly reliable location with abundant energy, is an energy-efficient data center that uses the latest technologies and systems to enhance reliability. Variable frequency drives, ultrasonic humidification, LED lighting and sealed server racks allow IO to efficiently remove heat from the data center and reduce energy consumption.
CBS Interactive selected IO’s high-density colocation solution that is designed to support the world’s largest media and content distributors. Engineered with high-availability electrical and mechanical systems, IO’s innovative technologies support these high densities in an “Always-on” environment. With CBS Interactive significantly growing on the storage and server front, economization was an important factor.
“In our previous location, the primary challenge wasn’t physical space, the issue was providing enough cooling and power in a cost-effective manner,” clarified Comstock. “IO’s controlled hot and cold aisle directly translates into lower power costs. We’ve benefitted from IO’s forward-looking ability to create the most efficient data centers with the highest density.”
The density of digital energy delivered by IO was beyond CBS Interactive’s expectations. “IO’s colocation services have become a critical component of our infrastructure. There’s essentially no combination of equipment that can’t be cooled within that space,” added Comstock.
The financials were important for CBS Interactive, particularly on the operations side. Selecting IO as its data center provider proved significant from a savings standpoint. “We were able to reduce our previous colocation costs by about two-thirds, and we are benefiting from a state-of-the-art facility,” said Comstock.
“From a network perspective, IO is a carrier-neutral facility. This allows us the flexibility to improve our overall spend and service by expanding our carrier choices. This flexibility has made a pretty dramatic impact to our total infrastructure costs.”
In a world full of rapid business and technology changes, CBS Interactive views IO as a constant benchmark of data center service and quality. “They’re in business to do one thing and they do it very well. IO is definitely a leader in the industry,” Comstock says.