2015, a Year of WAN Connectivity Options

As one year comes to an end and a new year begins, we reflect on 2015 to help plan for the future of our business, like identifying network services and design. The past year again saw a decline in private-line and packet services as more companies migrated to switched and dedicated Ethernet transport, IP VPN and MPLS services to better manage network traffic and make way for new applications.  

Increased migration to alternative WAN solutions for applications requiring any-to-any connections and to meet the needs for increased bandwidth (necessary for VoIP, video streaming, conferencing and other collaborative applications) has resulted in improved performance from various WAN connectivity technology options: carrier Ethernet, MPLS and cloud connectivity options.WAN Connectivity

In March this year, Channel Partners produced a report, WAN Connectivity: New Options, New Opportunities. In it, the author states, “MPLS is still the most popular WAN VPN technology and IDC forecasts the global demand for network-based IP VPN services to grow to $52 billion by 2017, due to the service’s versatility, features and security.”

Days are numbered for SMBs to operate private remote access and individual branch VPNs, as companies look to pair broadband service with network virtualization, create a private network overlay with cloud network services or move directly to cloud connectivity. And particularly for SMBs, private-line WAN connections and protocols like MPLS could be considered too expensive in terms of cost and resources, especially when dealing with the management of hardware.

As some consumers look to reduce operational WAN costs and perhaps shift to something they perceive to be more secure than IP Internet connectivity, many transition to hybrid solutions. When looking back at 2015, the market for cloud connectivity options were plentiful and continue on a path of growth with no signs of slowing.

According to the Rayno Report featured in the Network Computing’s article The Rise of Cloud WAN,  “the market for enterprise WAN services could be upwards of $7.5 billion by 2020. More than $360 million in venture capital has gone into the cloud WAN space, creating a wave of startups that will also push the incumbents to innovate in the WAN.”

2016 will be a strong year for cloud connectivity innovation. SD WAN providers pitch network flexibility (not just a lower cost solution) and are focusing on easy transitions with hybrid solutions, prioritizing traffic where organizations can keep their existing MPLS network while mission critical applications take precedence.

Regardless of the new and improved options for edge connection, organizations still need to evaluate all their options not just for cost, but for scalability, quality of service, speed and of course, security. 


About the Author
As Director of Marketing at TBI, Cohen is responsible for managing TBI’s marketing communications and implementing multi-channel branding and press strategies. In addition to driving TBI’s overall marketing strategy, Cohen directs both internal and external communications to ensure the delivery of valued products and programs to providers and partners alike. You can contact Corey at ccohen@tbicom.com or connect with her on LinkedIn.