Service providers will see themes continue to gain momentum and new technology trends emerge, according to Silver Peak chief executive, David Hughes.
“For 2015, it was predicted that software-defined WAN (SD-WAN) would move quickly from initial concept to production deployments,” he said in a statement.
“While that has happened, many companies are still looking to reduce the cost and complexity of MPLS networking by deploying broadband connections, and this will directly impact service providers.
“Next year, SD-WAN will go mainstream. Service providers will need to move fast if they are to reap the benefits of the enterprise WAN. Critical for service providers is that Internet WANs require multiple paths to route applications intelligently over the network.
Hughes went on to predict the rise of 4G LTE in the branch office.
“In 2016, more 4G LTE is likely to be deployed in branch offices, where organisations can quickly deliver the bandwidth remote users need either as part of a rapid, instant-on branch start-up, or as a secondary connectivity to ensure uptime and always-on access to business-critical applications in the event of a blackout or brownout on the primary WAN links,” he said.
“While priced higher than other forms of connectivity – and usually priced based on usage – 4G LTE can be an ideal solution for branch start-up or fallback link technology.
“For service providers this means that 4G LTE deployments are growing and will give them a good return on investment. Organisations require a more flexible means of connecting remote workers and central offices via the WAN, and 4G LTE managed through SD-WAN will provide far better economic returns and capabilities than MPLS connections.
Stronger network software revolution and NFV adoption were other areas singled out for growth.
“The continuing network software revolution will grow stronger as more network stalwarts release software versions of their legacy products. Companies at the leading edge of the network software revolution are shipping more than 75 per cent of their products as software – and that adoption curve should continue.
“Service providers are starting to realise they can begin virtualising network functions using software today. As a result, there will be a significant increase in the adoption of NFV, independent of SDN roll-outs.”
More powerful analytics and visibility techniques are set to emerge as a growing trend Hughes added.
“As the volume of network health information collected increases, enterprises will want to identify broader usage trends and gain insight into the gigabytes of raw data to find the ‘needle in the haystack’ when troubleshooting network and application issues,” he explained.
“Service providers will play a critical role here in helping to deliver these techniques, not least because SD-WAN technology is capable of bringing agility and automation to the network.
“Ultimately, 2016 will be a big year for service providers as SD-WAN becomes the enterprise norm. This will be driven by the onslaught of 4G LTE deployments, the adoption of software solutions and NFV, and businesses looking for greater insight into the health of their network. Service providers must, therefore, ensure that they stay one step ahead of these trends, otherwise they could find themselves falling behind their competitors,” Hughes concluded.