Neumob says it can accelerate mobile apps, unblock content

June 11th, 2015 | by Alfred Siew
Neumob says it can accelerate mobile apps, unblock content

Screenshot_2015-06-11-15-50-53 Screenshot_2015-06-11-15-51-22

A new mobile app out in Singapore recently is promising to speed up mobile apps for users, while unblocking content from overseas.

Neumob, founded last year in the United States, says it can make content such as webpages and images load faster on the small screen with its app installed on Android and iOS devices.

The app essentially connects to the company’s various POPs or points of presence in various countries to find the fastest route between them, much like a taxi driver finding the best route to bypass typical rush hour traffic.

To make things easier to understand for users, the app shows how much faster their apps have been performing while using Neumob’s links. When Techgoondu tried it out this week, it showed varying improvements of between 40 per cent and 150 per cent, at least on paper.

While some websites, such as the Telegraph in Britain, did seem to load faster, they were not slow even without any help from Neumob. The 4G link on M1 was already pretty fast, at least when we tried it out yesterday.

The Neumob app also works with Wi-Fi connections, according to the company. It essentially makes use of WAN (wide area networking) acceleration, similar to what content distribution networks (CDNs) such as Akamai and Limelight Networks already offer on a larger scale.

Unlike better-known rivals, however, Neumob is aimed at the consumer instead of content providers with deep pockets to optimise the delivery of their content.

One such consumer-friendly feature is the ability to unlock content across geographical boundaries. By connecting to its various POPs across the world, it could potentially let users access sites that would have been blocked otherwise.

For example, a user can use the app to access blocked websites such as Facebook or Google Maps while he is in China. Similarly, a user outside of China may be able to access, say, video services that are otherwise available only in the country.

Clearly, the app still needs work, as we had some issues connecting to a Neumob server at times. Also, we could not connect to some apps such as China’s LeTV when the app is set to point to a China server.

The other question is whether your data is safe travelling through Neumob’s servers. According to the company, it keeps only anonymised data and values users’ privacy seriously.

Whether a consumer-drive CDN service can work depends on the number of users it can amass. Neumob currently gives users a few free credits for a quick test run. Once they run out, they’ll have to purchase more credits to keep using the services.

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