SD-WAN remains bang on trend. It rose rapidly to prominence a few years back and remains a perennial favourite among CIOs looking for a way to rationalise a mess of networking spaghetti. SD-WAN is all about intelligent, adaptable, and always-on connectivity.
According to a recently published report from Dell’Oro Group, strong enterprise appetite for network and security transformation is driving robust growth in SD-WAN, and in its close cousins SASE and SSE, to new heights.
“Even in an environment of macro-economic angst, enterprises continued to strategically invest in SASE technologies to secure and improve connectivity for cloud-based apps and hybrid work,” says Mauricio Sanchez, Research Director, Network Security, and SASE & SD-WAN at Dell’Oro Group. “Both SASE’s components, SSE and SD-WAN, saw more than 30 percent growth, showing enterprises value SASE’s network and security transformation benefits.”
These technologies remain among the fastest-growing segments of the network infrastructure market due no doubt to their ability to improve user and application experiences, provide integrated networking and security, as well as offer seamless connectivity to the cloud. They also, crucially, have the power to save cost.
SASE looks like being particularly crucial going forwards, with its promise of taking the best aspects of SD-WAN and wedding them to security. Throughout the pandemic organisations of all sorts were deploying SASE architecture to enable hybrid work, and to let them safeguard data wherever it moves. SASE was perfect for the support of digital transformation efforts, and for realising greater efficiency and ROI from existing technology. The best SASE solutions proved central to providing the kind of optimized access and Zero Trust-based security needed in a modern technology stack.
As we move forwards beyond COVID, it is clear that legacy network and security solutions, like traditional firewalls, are no longer capable of addressing the demands of hybrid work environments. But questions remain. If I am to avoid the shortcomings of legacy and opt for the freedom of SD-WAN and SASE, how should I navigate the raft of confusing options presented by the market? How can I jump out of the frying pan of traditional security and connectivity and not end up in the fire of point solutions from multiple sources? Too many CIOs have fallen into the trap of adopting a web of digital capabilities from a variety of vendors and then suffered the stress of trying to integrate it all.
Quite a few are deciding that they are best off consolidating their SASE and SD-WAN migration around one or two leading vendors, or even of taking the benefits of those technologies as a managed service thus avoiding the need for any integration.
If you would like to hear more about how SD-WAN and SASE are set to evolve in the future and how organisations can steer clear of pitfalls, then the following virtual event should be considered essential.
By Guy Matthews, Editor of NetReporter