The modern manufacturer relies on a wide-area network (WAN) to keep their critical infrastructures connected and operational. As with any industry entering the digital age, an application-aware SD-WAN solution can be particularly valuable in allowing manufacturers to prioritize network bandwidth to business-critical applications and best direct network traffic, thus supporting current business demands while helping manufacturers plan for the future.
Today’s manufacturers employ numerous applications that rely on functional WANs, ranging from real-time and bulky applications to wearable IoT. Each of these contributes to a safer, more efficient and agile manufacturing landscape than ever before.
While many people think the Internet-of-Things (IoT) represents a new group of technologies, IoT devices have actually been living in our pockets for years. The smartphones that most of us rely on daily, for instance, are already equipped with sensors and beacons similar to the ones that will connect non-cellular IoT devices in the future. Even banks, utility companies and other industries have years of familiarity with machine-to-machine (M2M) networks, as these connections make processes like credit card transactions and smart electrical metering a reality.
While we always look forward to the annual MEF event, this year’s conference was especially satisfying, as InfoVista took home the 2016 Excellence Award for Third Network Technology Solutions Multi-Vendor Innovation of the Year, which we showcased as part of our proof-of-concept (PoC).
This marks the second consecutive year that we’ve been recognized in the Multi-Vendor Innovation of the Year category by the MEF, this time alongside Oracle Communications, Juniper Networks and ADVA Optical Networking, our partners in developing the PoC.
With businesses large and small wasting no time taking their operations into the digital future, step one in the process for many, involves implementing an SD-WAN. According to research from MarketsandMarkets, the global SD-WAN market is expected to reach $5.57 billion by 2020. To help facilitate this new era of digital transformation, earlier this week, we unveiled IpanemaGO, our cloud-based service management platform for our industry-leading application-aware SD-WAN solution, Ipanema. The platform offers enterprises quick and easy deployment of SD-WAN with just a few mouse clicks.
At this year’s SD-WAN Summit in Paris, SD-WAN vendors and service providers commingled to discuss the challenges that both parties face in adopting software-defined architectures, as well as the shift in the relationship between enterprises and CSPs in orchestrating SD-WAN network functions.
For enterprises, switching to SD-WAN often entails a migration to hybrid WAN that utilizes public Internet as well as MPLS from their service provider. While in many cases this will require the enterprise to rely less heavily on purchasing megabits per second (Mbps) from their CSPs, larger businesses will still lean on service providers to help manage the transition from legacy network architectures toward software-defined models.
After exhausting the limits of my Portuguese language skills the previous week in Rio, I carried on to Santiago, Chile. Spanish can’t be much more difficult, I presumed, but I was quickly corrected and advised that Chilean Spanish is often considered one of the hardest Spanish accents to understand, ¿Cachai? (which means “you know what I mean”, or “you understand”, or, much like my Canadian mother-tongue, “eh?”). Thus, I quickly figured out how to mangle another Latin language but luckily for me, the people of Santiago were very forgiving, in particular the dozens that came to attend the MEF seminar.
I arrived in Rio just as the last of the barricades from the Paralympics were being placed on trucks. I proceeded to wander the afternoon-markets alongside Copacabana beach, practicing my Portuguese to use for my introduction to a presentation on “Multi-Operator Service Delivery: From Months to Minutes…” at the MEF seminar set for later that week.
A lot has changed in Brazil over the last year: Where once MEF and Carrier Ethernet were met with some curiosity and skepticism, now they are recognized as a must-have. Attendees questioned how to get onboard, fast. With well over 100 attendees, including all of the major operators in Brazil, carrier-to-carrier business appeared to be at the top of the opportunity list as global carriers seek access to local sites using standardized CE2.0 services.
Enterprise wide-area networks (WANs) have a tendency to become extremely cumbersome in a short amount of time. The economics of provisioning and remediation among the many different network layers while meeting SLAs for security and compliance can quickly become untenable for IT organizations that don’t have tools in place for orchestration and performance management.
Enter software-defined WAN (SD-WAN), a new networking model that gives IT visibility into the many moving parts of the WAN. By managing the connectivity infrastructure between corporate and cloud sites through a central, software-driven controller, the WAN is able to become more agile and those using it more productive. This combines with real-time monitoring and reporting to ensure application SLAs are met for enterprise end-users, as well as tools that allow IT managers to dynamically direct critical traffic on the WAN while monitoring for possible service degradations.