Software-defined networks (SDN), those that use applications as a means of controlling the flow of traffic through a network, are becoming a more accepted paradigm in the business world. However, even with wider adoption, the technology is still evolving rapidly. Often, CIOs and other IT managers have trouble keeping pace with the speed of innovation in this sector, and it can be hard to identify which developments truly deserve your attention.
With that in mind, here are a few of the top trends in SDN that actually deserve your attention.
SD-WAN Service Models
Though SD-WAN services are becoming more popular, not every offering in the space is created equal. Each vendor package varies from the next, but most fall into one of two categories: passive or synergistic.
A passive model has the SD-WAN features packaged in the provider’s physical or virtual device and inherits many of the current network’s features for internet connections. Synergistic options, however, provide the network operator with an additional edge as it works in conjunction with the existing infrastructure. At the moment, the differences between the two are largely considered subtle, but the gap is growing as the technology evolves.
Impact of Net Neutrality
Revisions of the net neutrality regulations give ISPs the ability to manage traffic differently than they once could. It allows them to prioritize traffic based on a number of factors, such as the website being viewed, which has the ability to affect QoS (Quality of Service) in a way that is out of the hands of the business.
However, SD-WAN has the potential to overcome some of these challenges and may become a more popular, and ultimately robust option should the changes in the regulations become fully realized.
Monetization and Cost Savings
While most companies don’t envision monetizing their WAN, it is something that SDN has the capacity to allow. An SD-WAN may help a range of service providers, including ISPs, make the best use of excess bandwidth, something that can result in financial gains.
Primarily, it has the potential to decrease costs, something that directly impacts any organization’s bottom line. Since voice and data-related expenses tend to make up a large portion of a company’s budget, anything that brings these costs down should be seen as a boon, particularly if you are able to maintain or exceed the current level of service.
Additionally, an SD-WAN doesn’t require companies to lock in with an individual carrier at each location. It provides an inherent level of flexibility, allowing for greater cost management while optimizing connectivity. Some SD-WAN models are also designed to be scalable, allowing a business to grow without having to worry about performance sacrifices along the way.
Ultimately, SDNs offer a significant amount of potential, having the ability to improve internal operations will also lower the total cost of business. Plus, the technology continues to evolve, meaning that tomorrow’s SDNs may outpace those of today.
If you are interested in learning more, the professionals at The Squires Group can help. Contact us to speak with one of our knowledgeable staff members today.