Software-Defined Wide Area Networking (SD-WAN) is gaining traction and market share, with more and more enterprises adopting it as a better way to manage hybrid, cloud-connected networks. For IT professionals, SD-WAN is an innovative way to orchestrate application delivery, accelerate application performance, and unify network connectivity across hybrid networks. When implemented correctly SD-WAN can also improve network management, increasing business agility and reducing time to revenue.
With SD-WAN solutions on the rise, it’s worth taking a look at what key industry analysts have to say about this emerging technology. What can it do for your business? What should you look for if you’re considering making the change? And is it here to stay or will it soon be replaced by the next big thing? Here’s what the key analysts who’ve weighed in on SD-WAN have to say.
Forrester: The Future of WAN is Software-Defined
“Software-defined WAN solutions are highly appealing for their efficiency, flexibility, and security benefits. Our survey showed that although still emerging, software-defined WAN solutions are integral in shaping the future of WAN management.” – Forrester Analyst
As a global leader in market research, everyone turns to Forrester to learn which technology and trends we should be adopting next. And here it is—Forrester predicts that SD-WAN is integral to the future of WAN management. In this Technology Adoption Profile Report, Forrester explores hybrid networks in the cloud era, finding that while hybrid topologies have the potential to increase network capacity and reliability, they’re often too complex, delicate, and expensive to maintain. The report explains why 90% of network managers are looking to evolve their wide area network (WAN). And it covers what networking technologies are necessary to compete in the digital age, and what capabilities you should look for in a software-defined solution. Download the Forrester Technology Adoption Profilefor the inside scoop.
Gartner: Digital Business Initiatives Will Require a Hub-Based WAN Edge for Sufficient Agility
Due to strong growth in digital business initiatives, I&O leaders must prepare their WANs for a fourfold increase in external partner interconnects. This research examines the radical impact these changes will have on partner interconnects, WAN architectures and best practices.
Prepare your company for the impact of digital business by socializing the view across all key IT and non-IT stakeholders that without the WAN there is no digital business. Thus, the WAN has become a strategic asset and not just a cost center.
Start WAN architecture planning by clarifying senior business and technology leaders' digital business ambitions and focus on specific digital business projects as your first priority.
Identify all core partners involved in your enterprise digital business ecosystems, and outline required traffic flows for relevant processes and applications in each ecosystem.
Use projected revenue growth from specific projects to fund investments in WAN enhancements required to support the project.
Enforce connection- and application-specific access policies at the WAN perimeter by deploying SD-WAN and SDP within the ecosystem interconnect platform
IDC addresses both the challenges and opportunities that come with “digital transformation” in the cloud era. For enterprise IT professionals, networking requirements associated with cloud computing are requiring a new approach to WAN architecture and infrastructure. And, like Forrester and Gartner, IDC finds that SD-networking has emerged as a way to accommodate cloud applications and services while also delivering the business agility and responsiveness that traditional networking approaches lack.
IDC reports that new technologies including SD-WAN are “coming to the rescue” and enabling enterprise IT teams to meet cloud computing challenges, and embrace digital opportunities. For guidance on how to transform your WAN architecture, download the IDC Report.
Take the Next Step
As these reports show, SD-WAN is making waves as an important new networking technology. While these analysts do address key requirement to look for in an SD-WAN solution, when you’re ready to deep dive into your organization’s unique needs talking to an expert can really help. Riverbed offers consultations to discuss what kind of custom SD-WAN solution would work best for your network and how to best implement it using your available resources, plus what kind of ROI you can expect. Contact us now to talk to an expert.