Improve the performance of SaaS platform cloud applications

SteelHead SaaS accelerates cloud-based services and SaaS applications in the same way that traditional SteelHead optimization products accelerate enterprise applications running on hybrid WANs. SteelHead SaaS locates the fastest path from your end users to their SaaS applications.

It was just amazing how much better Office 365 was with Riverbed: 300% performance improvement in some cases, sub-second response times now for anything – you wouldn’t know it was in Singapore.  CIO, MTC Australia. 
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How can I accelerate the performance of SaaS cloud computing applications?

The dynamic nature of SaaS applications can slow performance due to the distance between the cloud and users. SteelHead SaaS accelerates the delivery of SaaS applications by up to 33x. You can accelerate applications and manage the delivery of business-critical data and content from your SaaS provider—overcoming application latency, bandwidth constraints, and competition among applications.

SteelHead’s Universal SaaS licensing includes optimization for all supported applications, delivering the flexibility to activate optimization for the applications that are most important to your business and enabling you to dynamically adjust to user needs. With SteelHead SaaS, you can leverage global resources no matter where the data and applications reside, access applications and data from anywhere, and reduce the cost of running your business.

SteelHead SaaS has long been the industry leading solution, offering end-to-end optimization for Office 365 and Salesforce. Now, SteelHead SaaS has been extended to include more SaaS applications such as Box, Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online, SuccessFactors and ServiceNow.

steelhead SaaS infographic
How It Works
We achieved 80% data reduction while utilizing six times less bandwidth. - Lionel Marie, network architect at Schneider Electric
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Accelerate SaaS application delivery and provide flexible scalability

SteelHead SaaS is an integrated, purpose built, end-to-end scalable solution that accelerates SaaS application delivery to and from the cloud. You can start optimization for SaaS applications with a simple license activation—any physical or virtual SteelHead solution already deployed can quickly be enabled and service availability is instantly increased based on user demand. SteelHead SaaS is easy to deploy and requires no changes to the user side or in the SaaS-provider cloud.

SteelHead’s award-winning optimization technology seamlessly integrates with the globally distributed Akamai Intelligent Platform, which optimizes the routing of traffic across the public Internet, to accelerate application performance.

Multi-tiered optimization for SaaS

  • Leverages data, application, and transport streamlining, as well as SaaS and cloud intelligence
  • Uniquely ensures optimization and the best end user experience with GeoIQ for Office 365 mailboxes
  • Ever-expanding support for more SaaS applications including Office 365, Microsoft Dynamics,, Box and ServiceNow

Acceleration as a service

  • Delivered as a service, subscription model
  • Easy to deploy, requiring no changes to the user side or the SaaS provider environment
  • Seamlessly activated on any licensed SteelHead solution
  • Offers flexible optimization for any or all supported SaaS applications per-user by simply checking a box in the Cloud Portal
  • Provides secure, end-to-end optimization across the Hybrid WAN and Internet right to the front door of the SaaS provider

Built on SteelHead, for SaaS

  • Provides all the capabilities of the Riverbed SteelHead solution, built on the same platform, purpose built for SaaS
  • Maintains security via Secure Socket Level (SSL) peering

The business case for SteelHead SaaS

SteelHead SaaS accelerates SaaS application delivery and provides scalability to accommodate your mobile and branch workforce.

SteelHead SaaS also reduces the growing IT complexity, ensuring maximum performance of SaaS applications no matter where users are located.

Accelerated SaaS applications

  • Improves performance of SaaS applications up to 33x
  • Reduces bandwidth up to 97%
  • Enhances scalability with Universal SaaS licensing for all supported applications including Office 365, Microsoft Dynamics,, Box and ServiceNow
  • Makes SaaS applications feel local by combining SteelHead acceleration with Akamai’s SureRoute optimization

Integrated visibility

  • Enables end user monitoring and troubleshooting for SteelHead-optimized and non-optimized enterprise Web and SaaS applications through seamless integration with Riverbed SteelCentral AppResponse
  • Supports end-to-end network monitoring and reporting through seamless integration with SteelCentral NetProfiler
  • Improves problem resolution with on-demand gathering of packet and flow data from the branch through activation of SteelCentral NetShark

Dynamic performance management

  • Instantly creates the cloud-side SteelHead within the Akamai SureRoute IP network
  • Elastically provisions to dynamically accommodate increases in user connections, and automatically load-balances based on the number of users
  • Seamlessly delivers location-independent SaaS optimization for a global workforce to accommodate user, client, and application mobility

Determine Your ROI

You understand the benefits of SteelHead WAN Optimization.  Now you can use the resources here to estimate the return on investment with WAN optimization for your organization:

Infographic: Optimize your networks with WAN Optimization

Optimize your networks, maximize your profits with WAN Optimization CX

IDC White Paper: Improving the Business Value of WAN Optimization

Gartner Study: How WAN Optimization Helps Enterprises Reduce Costs

Tech Specs

Technical Specifications

Need help choosing the SteelHead product that’s right for your organization?

Learn more about the technical characteristics and requirements of each model in the SteelHead Specs sheets.


Schneider Electric transformed its IT infrastructure, increasing business agility, reducing costs, and accelerating application performance for 110,000 employees in 100 countries.




Riverbed Application Performance Platform accelerates Office 365 and other application performance and delivers network visibility for a successful IT consolidation at Sub-Zero.

Riverbed® SteelHead™ Services

Drive adoption and utilization for SteelHead solutions while accelerating deployments for use cases such as SaaS, IaaS, Mobile, and data center migration.

Use Cases


Optimized Performance for Cloud and SaaS apps


How you can accelerate access to Microsoft Office 365 and

Featured Resources


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