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U.K. Enterprises Look to SDN to Increase Network Agility and Flexibility

U.K. enterprises see software-defined networking technologies as a way to improve the agility and flexibility of their networks and improve collaboration between employees, according to a new report published today by Information Services Group (ISG), a leading global technology research and advisory firm.

The 2021 ISG Provider Lens Network - Software Defined Solutions and Services Report for the U.K. sees enterprises here embracing SDN technologies to help them build new-age 4G and 5G mobile networks and accommodate distributed computing. Many enterprises are moving away from buying networking equipment from a single manufacturer and instead are sourcing network components from several suppliers and service providers.

The COVID-19 pandemic also has driven U.K. enterprises to upgrade their networks to enable employee collaboration and remote working, the report says.

As a result, U.K. enterprises are looking for more agile networks, said Jon Harrod, director of ISG Network Advisory Services in the U.K. "Enterprise agility goes far beyond the abilities of traditional networks, and SDN technologies can help companies provision new capabilities in a constantly changing business environment," he said.

The report also sees U.K. enterprises focusing on SD-WAN services, when in the past many had started their SDN journeys in the data center network. SD-WAN has become mainstream in the U.K., with enterprises extending it to the home office, driven by work-from-home arrangements during the COVID-19 pandemic. Many enterprises have also started deploying SD-LAN as an integrated fabric of the entire network.

In addition, the U.K. networking market has seen a shift from private to public networking in the past 12 to 18 months, the report says. U.K. enterprises are seeking more distributed networks due to the pandemic, triggering the integration of LAN, WAN and other network components.

The pandemic has also prompted U.K. businesses to focus on improving efficiency through more automation, the report says. Network transformation has been a key piece of this effort, with enterprises directing their efforts toward remote operations. U.K. enterprises are seeking help to identify ways to transform their network operations, using SDN and network virtualization to gain a competitive advantage during these challenging times.

The 2021 ISG Provider Lens Network - Software Defined Solutions and Services Report for the U.K. evaluates the capabilities of 75 providers across six quadrants: Managed (SD) WAN Services, SDN Transformation Services (Consulting and Implementation), SD-WAN Equipment and Service Suppliers (DIY), Technology and Service Suppliers (Core - 4G/5G), Edge Technology and Services, and Enterprise 5G Solutions.

The report names BT and Vodafone as leaders in all six quadrants and Orange Business Services as a leader in five. Cisco, Deutsche Telekom, HCL, IBM and Tech Mahindra are named leaders in four quadrants, and HPE Aruba, Nuage Networks and Wipro are named leaders in three. The report names Colt, Ericsson, Infosys, Tata Communications, Telefonica, Verizon, Vera Networks and VMware as leaders in two quadrants and Citrix, Juniper Networks, Nokia Networks, NTT and TCS as leaders in one.

In addition, Tech Mahindra, Verizon and Wipro were named Rising Stars-companies with "promising portfolios" and "high future potential" by ISG's definition-in two quadrants. Infosys and Microland were named Rising Stars in one quadrant.

A customized version of the report is available from Tata Communications.

Published Monday, July 05, 2021 9:15 AM by David Marshall
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