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Share an article talked about WAN acceleration. It mentions what WAN acceleration is, and then comes to how it works. I think it's worth to read! Here are some quotes from the full article.

Why WAN acceleration is one of the hottest projects in IT?

What is WAN acceleration?
WAN acceleration can drastically improve the speed of file transfers and the performance of many applications for your branch offices and remote workers. And since at least half, and by some estimates up to two-thirds, of all workers are located OUTSIDE the company's central office, this can be a big win.

How does it work?
WAN acceleration involves placing an appliance between your WAN router and your servers at the headquarters or primary data center and then another appliance in the same spot at each of the branch offices. The remote appliances then cache the large files that get sent repeatedly over the WAN and only replicate the small changes to the files. The appliances also do some compression and make some tweaks to optimize the networking protocols.

The result is that most files and applications will perform about five to ten times faster, and in some cases even up to 100 times faster. That will make employees much happier and more productive. The other benefit is that WAN acceleration can decrease WAN usage by up to 60-90%. That's where you'll see the ROI, because in many cases it can reduce the amount of bandwidth you'll need to purchase at some branch offices.