November 7, 2017
SD-WAN is abuzz in the technology industry, and for good reason. It provides significant cost savings for the network while simultaneously improving network and application performance. For many businesses, regardless of size, a software-defined wide area network (SD-WAN) can provide tremendous value. Yet, the technology has not gained widespread adoption. It is currently deployed in about 3% of the market, but its time is coming. By 2019, according to Gartner’s 2015 SD-WAN Report, SD-WAN will be deployed by 30% of enterprises in some form or another.
With a big push for SD-WAN just on the horizon, we’ve assembled this infographic to showcase some of the core features found in Cisco’s SD-WAN solution.
SD-WAN vs IWAN vs Meraki
For the past few years, Cisco has promoted their Intelligent WAN (IWAN) solution, but now the Cisco Website describes the solution as SD-WAN. This has caused some confusion in the market as to the differences between these solutions and the reason for the name change.
On August 1, 2017, Cisco acquired the SD-WAN startup out of San Jose, Viptela, to complement the Network. Intuitive campaign launched by Cisco in June. adds a few new capabilities to the Cisco IWAN and SD-WAN portfolio that elevate them in the marketplace. Viptela provides cloud-based network management as well as overlay technologies that assist in managing sophisticated WAN architectures.
This move might come as a further surprise for Meraki customers. Meraki’s key defining feature is its cloud management capabilities. Users can manage their entire Meraki network from any device, in any location, and at any time. Customers have long enjoyed these cloud-managed networks, and Viptela may make it appear as though Cisco is competing with itself.
Yes, Viptela is now a part of Cisco, and yes, it is cloud-managed. However, the new SD-WAN solution will not replace the existing IWAN or Meraki products. Instead, these three similar products will form a new Cisco portfolio for next generation WAN solutions. Each is best-suited to a different market segment, and each will be pitched to the audience that finds it most valuable.
- Meraki: For existing Meraki customers and those looking for a unified threat management solution (UTM), a Meraki SD-WAN will be ideal.
- SD-WAN: Advanced routing, granular segmentation, and a cloud-centric approach will attract customers to the new Cisco SD-WAN solution.
- Cisco IWAN: IWAN is still a viable option for customers wanting to support advanced services like voice, WAN optimization, switching, integrated threat control, and more on a single device.
The Right Solution for Your Company
With three overlapping but distinct options available from Cisco, there is almost certainly an SD-WAN solution to meet your business needs. If SD-WAN adoption is truly going to spike in the next two years, Cisco will be well poised to capitalize on the market demand.
The right SD-WAN solution for your company is largely dependent on your unique environment, your existing WAN architecture, and your goals. Contact the consultants at Mindsight to discuss your environment and all possible SD-WAN, IWAN, or Meraki solutions.
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