Aligning SD-WAN connectivity to support business agility
Global SD-WAN platform company Aryaka Networks sees that the world’s global network connectivity has drastically changing, irrevocably changing the way that the Internet has to support business operations.
Enterprise IT News chats with CMO Gary Sevounts about what all this actually means for connectivity and SD-WAN technology.
EITN: Could you explain exactly why the role of global network connectivity has undergone massive transformation? What is this transformation that has happened for global network connectivity?
Sevounts: There are three primary trends that have driven the massive transformation of global network connectivity.
- Enterprises today are globally distributed, and have a large remote and mobile workforce.
- IT transformation
- IT is undergoing a massive transformation from being a cost center to a value creator and driver of business growth and improvement.
- Rapid adoption of cloud services and SaaS applications around the world
- Cloud computing has revolutionized how enterprises work with their data and applications. Mission-critical applications like ERP, CRM, Office, etc. have migrated to the cloud
For global applications that run across multiple continents, the network thus becomes a critical part of IT infrastructure to support business operations. Internet and MPLS-based connectivity are no longer adequate. The Internet fails to deliver reliable application performance globally, while legacy networks like MPLS lack agility and do not help with improving performance of majority of cloud-enabled and SaaS applications.
Today’s global, cloud enabled businesses need:
Enterprise-grade connectivity and seamless application performance for global on-premises, real-time, and cloud/SaaS based applications
- Agility in network deployment and rapid bandwidth scaling, to support business expansion initiatives
- A fully managed service that ensures maximum uptime, without the need for an army of network administrators
- Real-time, end-to-end network and application visibility
EITN: Is SD-WAN technology the only way that APAC CIOs can leverage the cloud-based wide area networking?
Sevounts: Since SD-WAN technology was introduced, it has become the single largest trend today in enterprise networking.
This year saw multiple SD-WAN vendors arrive into the market. Start-ups, telcos, and major router providers all jumped into the space with their own spin on the service.
Most edge-based SD-WAN solutions address connectivity issues by reducing network complexity and lowering costs.
However, for global enterprise applications that run across multiple continents (both behind the firewall and SaaS), these solutions do not address performance needs due to their dependence on the unreliable public Internet and third party vendors for WAN Optimization, visibility, etc.
The only way enterprises can address end-to-end global connectivity and application performance needs is by using an SD-WAN solution that has a global private network integrated with it.
EITN: How do you see the SD-WAN market place and industry panning out in the next few years in terms of go-to-market and technology and capabilities that it enables?
Sevounts: The SD-WAN marketplace is evolving. Vendors have started to partner with other WAN edge players in WAN Optimization, routing, security, etc. or with MPLS providers to offer more comprehensive network capabilities at the branch. This trend is likely to continue.
In terms of go-to-market approaches, as different SD-WAN providers explore ways to address network connectivity and application performance challenges of the enterprise, we are starting to see several flavors of SD-WAN:
Overlay vs In-Net
- Overlay SD-WAN is designed to deploy and manage a network from a central location by installing edge devices that can also replace WAN routers in branch offices.
- In-Net SD-WAN also provides centralized management, but includes an actual network. This provides every global location in your enterprise with faster access and performance to SaaS applications, such as Office 365 or Salesforce.
Regional vs Global
- Regional SD-WANs are built to reduce network complexity, lower network costs, and replace regional MPLS links by aggregating connections over the public internet. However, they lack the global network component. This means it cannot address application delivery issues for cloud or SaaS services accessed from remote geographies.
- Global SD-WANs also reduce network complexity and lower costs, but they address global application performance issues by combining a private network for businesses layered with WAN Optimization software.
Do-It-Yourself (DIY) vs As-a-Service
- With a DIY SD-WAN, customers will have to place devices at each location to orchestrate network services and manage the WAN in-house. The customer will still need to deal with multiple vendors and network service providers. Having to manage the WAN in this scope could become resource-intensive for every location.
- As-A-Service SD-WANs are fully-integrated solutions. The provider takes care of the managing the network and minimal investment in resources are needed by the customer to maintain the network at each location.
EITN: What are the unique differences between Asia and the rest of the world’s landscape in terms of challenges and opportunities?
Sevounts: Asia is now a global economic powerhouse – across all industry segments. CIOs in Asia are going after cutting-edge technology in a big way, and are increasingly migrating their mission-critical applications to the cloud. Gartner predicts spending on public cloud services to rise to $12.4 billion in the mature Asia-Pacific market by 2019.
Businesses headquartered in US and Europe have traditionally relied on Asia to outsource their manufacturing and IT operations. Another opportunity that we are seeing over the last few years is that Asia-headquartered companies are going global. They are setting up sales and distribution offices as well as R&D facilities in US and Europe, and acquiring companies located overseas for business expansion.
However, networks in Asia in general have not yet achieved the same level of sophistication as networks in the West. For example, a legacy MPLS network could take up to 6-12 months to turn up in China, while the same could be achieved in about 2-4 months in the US. Network costs in Asia also tend to be higher.
Moreover, since major cloud service providers and SaaS application vendors have datacenters in the US, users in branch offices located in Asia do not experience the same level of application performance as their US counterparts, due to high latencies.
These challenges present an opportunity for companies like ours as we are the only global SD-WAN provider that provides fast, reliable, secure, and scalable connectivity to enterprises, and helps them address their global application performance needs.
EITN: What are your business plans for APAC for 2017?
Sevounts: APAC has always been a huge part of Aryaka’s phenomenal growth story as a significant part of our revenues comes from this region. We saw early success in APAC as we acquired enterprise customers here during the initial months we started selling our solution globally.
With offices in Singapore, China, and India, we are heavily invested in APAC. Almost half of our global PoPs are located here; the latest one added to our global network footprint being the Taiwan PoP.
We also enjoy a strong customer and market footprint in APAC, and support global enterprises like Havas, Bajaj Electricals, Air China, and Volex. Some of our strategic partners in the region include KDDI, Sejong Telecom, SK Broadband, and 21Vianet.
In 2017, we are looking to keep the momentum growing for Aryaka in APAC, and are committed to support our customers in the region with their global network connectivity and application performance issues.