Competition between Juniper and Cisco has just got a little more interesting. Juniper has bought Akeena Networks , a company that provides online media content, and said that it would integrate Akeena's technology into Juniper systems to provide its users with rich media content.

The two companies announced a partnership agreement last autumn, as part of Juniper's New Network initiative, but the Juniper acquisition, for an unspecified amount - although Juniper said that it was less than a $100 million, means that Juniper is set to take on Cisco in a battle over new media.

Juniper said that Ankeena's Media Flow Director would help improve the viewing experience for users. It said that Ankeena's support for different adaptive streaming technologies would allow videos to be watched without any buffering or stuttering by dynamically detecting the available bandwidth and varying the delivery bit-rate.

Juniper's arch-rival Cisco has been actively promoting video over its networks. Not only did the company acquire Tandberg earlier this year, but it has announced a raft of initiatives to improve video delivery

"Juniper's acquisition of Ankeena reflects our commitment to transforming the experience and economics of networking - in this case by delivering an enhanced TV-like user experience of both fixed and mobile video traffic, while enabling crucial TCO reductions for operators," said Manoj Leelanivas, executive vice president and general manager, Junos Ready Software at Juniper Networks.