Fanout, a company that has been in private beta since its inception in 2011, will be available to the general public this week. According to company founder Justin Karneges, Fanout provides real-time data push, which ensures content is delivered to a device without delay or requiring a refresh.
Say your company is involved in gaming, messaging, delivering stock quotes or anything that involves constantly changing content. The last thing you want is your users to have to refresh every time there is new information available. Fanout’s job is to push the latest content to devices.
Karneges describes the service as being like a traditional Content Delivery Network (CDN) where files are stored on cached servers across the world and they retrieve the file from the closest server. Push notifications work in a similar fashion, he explained, but it’s for outbound push traffic. Instead of calling the server, there’s always a channel open for communication — the push.
He said people who use his service require real-time updates, because that’s what users expect or they simply want a slicker user experience regardless.
Some early clients include OfficePools, a fantasy hockey tool in Canada where they take their hockey seriously and want their scores in real time without having to refresh. Another early customer is RealCrowd, a crowdsourced real-estate funding site where it’s important to see updated information in real time without refreshing. In this case, investment decisions depend on it.
Fanout is a bootstrapped startup and so far at least they haven’t taken any external venture funding, but that could change as they move from beta to public offering this week.