SD-WAN was named “the most disruptive technology” of 2019 and its uptake continues to swell among enterprises around the world. In this post we take a look at what is driving the global shift to SD-WAN technology and the key benefits for companies switching from MPLS to a Software-Defined Wide Area Network.
The Global SD-WAN Takeover
SD-WAN’s rise has been meteoric and it remains one of the fastest-growing technologies within the network infrastructure market.
Why? There’s good reason. With traditional network solutions failing to meet the needs of modern organisations and as companies look to better manage multiple network connections, Software-Defined WANs offer the support, visibility, and reliability that digital businesses and their cloud-based applications increasingly demand.
According to a 2019 International Data Corporation (IDC) report, SD-WAN is projected to grow at a 30.8% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) from 2018 to 2023. We’re already seeing that shift firsthand, with many customers coming to us in search of a network solution better fit for purpose.
Why is SD-WAN So Popular?
Imagine that your business has offices across Australia, New Zealand, and Southeast Asia. Some of the branches may connect with each other via one internet connection and others may use multiple providers. Relying on these internet connections for critical business usage opens any company up to security vulnerabilities and performance issues. In the past, the way to resolve this was to engineer special Multi-Protocol Label Switching routers to connect all the limbs of the business together.
But here’s the key problem with MPLS: It is incredibly costly. MPLS hikes expenditure everywhere from network equipment and routers to basic capacity.
It’s also less reliable (the single circuits of the MPLS world are risky points of failure) and offers limited bandwidth (increasing capacity is always a lengthy and expensive affair).
So what’s the answer?
SD-WAN to the rescue!
The Key Benefits of SD-WAN
There are a whole host of reasons that businesses are moving from MPLS to SD-WAN solutions, but ultimately, they boil down to two overarching benefits:
1. SD-WAN Offers More Bandwidth at a Lower Cost
One of the key reasons MPLS found favour in the past was its ability to offer better Quality of Service than other internet-based solutions. But for applications where bandwidth really matters, MPLS just doesn’t cut the mustard.
SD-WAN technology has blown MPLS bandwidth out of the water and provides customers with far superior capacity at a much lower cost.
2. SD-WAN Allows for Vital Visibility
There can be a ton of inefficiencies in businesses still signed up to MPLS networks, and much of that wastage comes from a lack of visibility. If you don’t know where your traffic is going or what your QoS and bandwidth requirements really are, then you’re missing the opportunity to tailor your networking solutions to the specific needs of your company.
Visibility is one of the main reasons so many companies around the world are implementing SD-WAN systems and empowering themselves with a better understanding of what exactly is going on within their networks.
The Knock-On Effects of Better Bandwidth and Visibility
Organisations that have switched to SD-WAN report a variety of subsequent benefits from enhancing their bandwidth capacity and improving visibility over their network, including:
- Increased staff productivity and network user satisfaction
- Increased flexibility with services, service providers, and contracts
- Increased network security
- Increased network resilience and service assurance
Plus a raft of other benefits that stem from these broad improvements!
Getting Onboard with SD-WAN
If your company is looking to join the shift to SD-WAN technology, we can help. Check out our useful rundown all about reviewing your WAN environment before the end of your current contract term.
If you’d like to discuss your network options, get in touch anytime. Our team is always happy to perform a free network assessment to ensure your company has a network solution that’s cost-effective, efficient, reliable, and secure.