Watch these 5 network trends in 2019

Rajat Arora

In the last couple of years, we saw networking priorities shift with software-defined networking (SDN) technology taking the center stage as the biggest driver of change. As a business leader, the timing couldn’t be better to have a re-look at your current network architecture and plan the upgrade to SDN which can enable a more integrated, scalable, and cost-effective network design. Carrying on the momentum, here are the five networking trends to watch in 2019:

  1. Managed service partner model evolving as a viable option for enterprises

Rapid adoption of cloud and digitization is leading to many established enterprises using hybrid data and cloud infrastructure. This is re-shaping the requirements for enterprise networks, where the network managers are expected to provide enhanced visibility into the application and infrastructure performance.
The increasing complexities of the networks require standardized solutions, which are also scalable. And all this is desired to enable centralized management of networks and enhanced security with high connection availability while reducing the overall cost of network management. This is leading into the trend of network integration and connectivity service providers creating an integrated managed service platform using software defined architecture and offering customer centric propositions.
The managed service providers are developing these integrated and standardized solutions with capability of zero-touch provisioning (ZTP) and remote management of network policies for scalability of managed services.

  1. SDN replacing traditional networks like MPLS

As part of the digital transformation plans, businesses have moved a majority of their everyday applications to the cloud. This could be G-Suite for productivity, Slack for collaboration, Zoho for payroll, or a host of other cloud-based services, which are working with many proprietary applications hosted on private cloud infrastructure. Business WAN has to support this trend and provide sufficient flexibility.
MPLS is used not only for creating secured networks but also to reach to many remote locations, where the traditional wired or wireless networks were not reaching, and hence it is expensive. With large investments in wireless (4G LTE) and wireline (optical fiber) networks for high speed broadband, internet reach and availability has significantly improved. This is leading a trend to replace traditional MPLS networks with new-age SD-WAN networks offering secured VPN over internet with added advantages like integrated security stack, ‘one-click’ installation and remote network management.

  1. Enabling branch level digital transformation

Another trend taking the centerstage is also driven by the development of software defined networks. The security stack is now integrated with SD-WAN network, enabling a single view of the network and security performance. Network security has been one of the large investment areas for enterprises and many companies have followed a conservative network design, which restricts the availability of high-speed internet at branch locations to avoid making heavy investments in distributed security platforms (essentially the internet in such a use case is either delivered over MPLS or through the mobile data networks on smartphones). Many enterprises are likely to graduate to SD-WAN and will benefit from a combination of VPN over high-speed internet using SD-WAN, which has integrated security features as available in any next-generation firewall or UTM solution. This is a completely different use case which will enable high-speed connectivity and fully managed security, enabling digital transformation at branch level and just not at the hub.

  1. High-speed internet. More bandwidth

By 2019, global IP traffic will reach 2 Zettabytes per year – that is 2 billion Terabytes of data passing through networks every year. Needless to say, a large portion of this will come from businesses, with regular use of data-heavy apps and video calling. Traditionally, bandwidth shortage was caused by limited bandwidth over MPLS. Now, businesses will be looking at providing high-speed internet (wherever available) and enabling it with software-defined routers for centralized policy control and making sure each application gets the bandwidth it requires.

  1. Embracing the wireless world

This is one trend which will continue its momentum as more and more business continues to happen on wireless devices. More mobile devices accessing corporate networks will advance the Wi-Fi network upgrades to make them superfast and completely secure. WLAN will be another area where the managed service providers are developing innovative technical integrations like centralized authentication of devices and offering differentiated commercial models like pay per user.
Businesses today are getting ready to make the move to software-defined approach, reinforce their security protocols, and push bandwidth capabilities beyond boundaries. This will pave the way for more agile, secure and connected workspaces. At Spectra, we work closely with growing and established businesses, understanding their requirements to deliver the best solution to ensure faster business growth. As a managed service provider, we take ownership of core functionalities, regardless of the network currently in use. We recently upgraded network infrastructure for AICA Laminated at their Delhi head office and two regional offices that has resulted in 30% savings on bandwidth spends and near-zero impact on business continuity.
About the Author
Mr. Rajat Arora serves as the Chief Commercial Officer at Citycom Networks Pvt. Ltd., also known as Spectranet Ltd. He previously served there as the Chief Operating Officer. He holds a Bachelor’s degree from University of Rajasthan. Being a well-seasoned telecom professional, he has about two decades of experience in the telecom domain. Rajat has worked with Bharti Airtel and Hexacom before being associated with Shyam Group. Joined as the COO in 2007, he moved up the ladder as the Head of Marketing & Strategy for Shyam Group. His deep understanding of the telecom business at the grass-root level and the aptitude to lead diverse functions brought him this progress at Spectra. Today, at Spectra, Rajat oversees sales and product development to drive business growth and market share. Rajat has amassed vast knowledge and understanding of the industry.

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