SD-WAN, which is an acronym for software-defined wide area network, is a virtual network architecture that is automated by software to manage enterprise network connectivity. This technology allows enterprises to use any combination of services like IP VPN, MPLS, LTE and broadband internet services to connect users to different applications.
SD-WAN improves the network security and simplifies the WAN architecture while ensuring consistent application performance and resilience and automating traffic navigation across the most efficient WAN path based on the network condition. This improves business performance and reduces IT expenditure by eliminating the need for the traditional method of backhauling the traffic from different branch offices to a data centre.
Organisations are rapidly adopting SD-WAN technology because of the financial and operational benefits their business would receive. It lowers the operational and capital expenditure while also lowering the cost of ownership. It improves the business agility to help keep the organisation in pace with IT innovations. It also supports multiple high-speed connections with improved network security by encrypting WAN traffic and segmenting the network to minimise damage in case of a breach. SD-WAN can also provide high-quality video conferencing as it will ensure the allocation of the required bandwidth.
In 2020, people witnessed many major changes around the world due to natural disasters such as floods, forest fires, and the pandemic of COVID-19, which affected the functions of many sectors and organisations which had to adopt work-from-home practices to ensure a smooth functioning of the company.
Effective conversation is very crucial among the employees, especially during the pandemic with staff working from home. This is a major factor driving the growth of the web conference software market.
Web conferencing is affected by a lot of prerequisites, even a 3 per cent packet loss and fluctuating latency dropping to 200ms can cause the conference to stream in poor quality with unstable frames.
The solution for this issue can be found in the software-defined wide area network market. SD-WAN will ensure that high-quality video is maintained by guaranteeing the required bandwidth is provided for video conferencing. It gives high priority to video conferencing by diverting priorities from other applications that are lower in priority and also gives control to the owner to assign priorities to all applications running on the network according to the requirement. It also provides reliable and consistent performance for voice over internet protocol (VoIP).
SD-WANs are also capable of optimizing link quality through Forward Error Correction (FEC) and packet redundancy. These two technologies together can drastically reduce the packet loss rate. Although FEC can cause technical issues due to low-speed network connection, SD-WAN can detect these low network speeds and adapt according to the issue.
SD-WAN’s dynamic path selection capability can help customers that have multiple WAN links to utilise the optimal path for consistent performance. SD-WAN does so by performing a scan of links to detect and select the optimal path for video conferencing, which ensures the quality of video and enhances the user experience.
SD-WAN eliminates the need for a physical connection between two nodes and replaces it with a virtual connection. A major benefit of SD-WAN is that it works effectively regardless of the type of network, LTE, DSL, or DIA whichever it is, SD-WAN can manage links without being bothered by the network type. This can allow medium and small-scale businesses to save a lot on IT expenditure.