IHS Markit: Cloud transformation drives high SD-WAN growth in North America

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SD-WAN is laying the groundwork for North American firms' cloud transformations. (Pexels)

IHS Markit has found that SD-WAN adoption is high on North American enterprises' priority lists partly because of how SD-WAN supports their priorities: reducing costs, improving application performance and simplifying WAN management.

According to IHS Markit's 2018 Enterprise Edge Connectivity Strategies North American Enterprise survey, 66% of respondents indicated plans to have SD-WAN deployments by the end of 2020. The research is based on a survey of 292 network professionals working in North American enterprise organizations.

"Companies deploying SD-WAN use over 50% more bandwidth than those who have not deployed it," reads the accompanying research note. "Their bandwidth needs are also growing at twice the rate of companies using traditional WANs."

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Companies are expecting to increase provisioned WAN bandwidth by more than 30% annually across all site types. Data backup and storage is the leading reason for traffic growth, followed by cloud services.

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Moreover, SD-WAN is laying the groundwork for North American firms' cloud transformations. Fifty-one percent of survey respondents say they will use hybrid cloud this year, while 37% report multicloud as on their 2019 to-do list.

The IHS Markit study also revealed that enterprise IT architectures and consumption models are currently undergoing a major transformation, from servers and applications placed at individual enterprise sites, to a hybrid-cloud model where centralized infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) complements highly utilized servers in enterprise-operated data centers. This process allows organizations to bring the benefits of cloud architectures to their own data centers.

SD-WAN solutions help enterprises create a fabric for the multicloud. Features like analytics to understand end-user behavior, enhanced branch security and having a centralized management portal all make SD-WAN an enticing proposition for enterprises looking to adopt a multicloud approach.

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