BroadbandConsistent security (36%), price (35%) and reduced complexity (31%) are the three main attributes enterprise businesses are looking for when it comes to SD-WANs (software-defined wide area networks), according to results of an IDC SD-WAN survey of more than 600 mid-market to enterprise scale businesses in the U.S., Canada, U.K., France, Germany, Japan, China, India and Australia. IDC’s SD-WAN revenues forecast calls for the technology to generate $6 billion annually by 2020.

A relatively recent market development, the emergence of SD-WANs has been preceded by hybrid WAN architectures in which SDN functionality and features are embedded within and laid on top of existing network architecture. As IDC explains, SD-WANs ¨incorporate a centralized, application-based policy controller, analytics for application and network visibility, a software overlay that abstracts underlying networks, and an optional SD-WAN forwarder (routing capability) that together provides intelligent path selection across WAN links.¨

SD-WAN Revenues Forecast Drivers
According to IDC’s SD-WAN revenues forecast:

  • Faster deployment and optimization of WAN bandwidth also scored high as motivational factors for enterprises considering SD-WAN deployments.
  • There will be a significant shift to Hybrid WAN, often a precursor of SD-WAN, in the next 12-18 months.
  • Key SD-WAN components include Security, WAN Optimization, Policy Control, and Automation.
  • Top SD-WAN use cases include multiple WAN providers, increased reliability, and direct SaaS provider access.

According to IDC VP, Network Infrastructure Rohit Mehra: “Given the significant, ongoing transition to cloud-based applications and services, the enterprise WAN is under acute pressure to cost-effectively adapt and deliver new capabilities and services. Understanding and adapting to the needs of enterprise IT is critical to achieving success in this evolving market, both for service providers as well as for technology solution providers.”

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