Versa + Riverbed: Advanced Networking and World-Class Service
Serving high-end enterprises with complex networks goes beyond just offering innovative technology; you also need the capacity to offer global sales and support, and individualized white-glove service. That's why the team-up between Riverbed and Versa Networks is such exciting news. Riverbed has entered an OEM agreement with Versa to offer its customers the innovative Secure Cloud IP software platform. And soon Riverbed will be integrating Secure Cloud IP with Riverbed's own SteelHead and SteelCentral offerings, adding even more value for customers.
"Our customers have come to expect that, no matter where the technology underneath comes from, Riverbed is going to put that brand value envelope around it and deliver a really great experience," says Guy Daley, Vice President of Product at Riverbed. Let's take a look at how Versa and Riverbed complement one another's strengths to offer that experience.
What Versa brings to the table
Versa Secure Cloud IP is an SD-WAN offering that includes routing and security functions for high-end enterprises. "Versa's capabilities support the most sophisticated networks that want to include SD-WAN," says Daley. "Versa provides necessary features, including things like VRF and application support like multicast, that go hand in hand with MPLS networking. They're very focused on core networking capabilities and replacing the branch router." The technology has been well received in the marketplace. But Versa is a relatively new startup, and many large enterprises — companies with exactly the networks that Versa's offering is built for — need to rely on worldwide sales and support before they're willing to invest.
That's where Riverbed comes in. By the end of 2019, customers will be able to buy Versa Secure Cloud IP from Riverbed, along with the Versa-certified hardware it runs on, with all the service and support they've come to expect.
But that's just the beginning of the benefits this alliance will bring. In the coming months, Riverbed is moving to integrate Versa into its technology stack. "One of the first things we're going to do is take our virtual SteelHead and put it on the same image with the Versa technology," says Daley. "We've already done some of that testing for specific customers in the field, and certification is underway. Then we'll start layering around that all of the other use cases that we’ve built for optimization, cloud connectivity, and SaaS acceleration."
On the horizon is connecting Versa with Riverbed's easy-to-use user interface. "Riverbed has developed a simple and rich user experience to aid operational deployment and 'day two' activities," says Daley, "so we’re going to put that on top of the Versa software. We also have some very streamlined one-click-to-cloud features that provide SD-WAN gateways into AWS and Azure very easily." And Versa will also be able to integrate into the SteelCentral suite of application, networking, and user experience monitoring tools so that customers can get full visibility into how well their Versa-powered SD-WAN is running.
"I think it will be really transformative to have that simple abstraction and user interface on top of an advanced tool like Secure Cloud IP, so that a different class of operator can engage with the network and do things with a feature velocity they never imagined possible," says Daley. "That's something we spend a lot of time figuring out. How do you create that really simple operational interface? It's not just about the first day you deploy; it’s the second day, where you’ve got issues and you’re trying to troubleshoot or diagnose something. You need a very simple process that enables someone to get to the answer quickly, and that’s where the rest of our portfolio comes in."
"Our customers have been very interested in the news about our team-up with Versa — they've been reaching out and asking for briefings," he adds. "We now have the best technology at the network level, combined with the SteelHead install base and our worldwide sales force and worldwide support. It's going to be very exciting."
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