SDN and the Future of Networking

Joel Stradling – Research Director, Business Network and IT Services

Summary Bullets:

• Demands of innovative collaborative communications and cloud-native applications are placing tremendous pressure on legacy WANs.

• As companies virtualize more and more IT functions and migrate apps to private and public clouds, the resulting network looks very different to legacy static and hub-and-spoke network configurations.

• Corporate networks need to evolve to support greater automation, more self-serve, and better operational simplicity and agility.

• New SD-WAN services are the key to effective control and management of network traffic within disruptive technology domains; such as cloud-native migration, 5G, IoT, big data analytics, augmented reality, and machine learning.

• The new era is identified by networks being applications-led; as opposed to being connectivity-led.


A panel of industry thought leaders gathered at the Vodafone Global HQ in Newbury on October 3, 2018 to address the following questions:

• What does the future of networking look like?

• How will how SD-WANs will make an impact on corporate networks?

• What are the opportunities and challenges in the industry for SD-WAN technology?

The following blog summarizes the main insights and discussion highlights that emerged during the panel debate.

Old Making Way for the New

The majority of existing corporate WANs in use throughout the business world are based on IP/MPLS technologies. In the past several years there has been a strong desire on the part of enterprise buyers of IT and network systems to also leverage Internet VPN, in parallel with private IP VPN services, to take advantage of a far lower cost-base for non-critical corporate data traffic. Continue reading “SDN and the Future of Networking”