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Revealed: Why SD-WAN is thriving in Australia

11 Aug 2020

Australian uptake of SD-WAN has been comparatively quick and widespread, with 60% of Australian IT enterprises having deployed it, according to new research from GlobalData.

The report, released today, also found one in three Australian IT enterprises are considering implementing the technology within the next 12 months.

The migration of last-mile access to the National Broadband Network (NBN) has been identified as a major factor contributing to Australia’s hastened migration to SD-WAN, according to GlobalData senior technology analyst Siow Meng Soh. 

But the market is swiftly becoming more competitive, and enterprises need to have a long-term network strategy to adapt to evolving traffic patterns.

“While cost-saving has been part of the motivation to adopt SD-WAN, better security and network management is also a key benefit,” says Soh.

Another benefit is the support for agility and business continuity, especially in a remote working environment. While SD-WAN over internet can deliver an enhanced remote working experience, the highly competitive SD-WAN industry in Australia has also led to an increasingly fragmented market.

GlobalData’s research shows Cisco and VMware neck and neck, ahead of the pack; but Aryaka, Silver Peak and Fortinet are also popular with each having over 10% of market share in Australia.

Almost 10% of the enterprises surveyed in GlobalData’s research were interested in buying SD-WAN directly from a vendor, while nearly 20% indicated a telecom operator as their preferred option.

Meanwhile, system integrators are increasingly seeing ‘corporate networking’ as a natural adjacency to their cloud, IT, security or professional services business, says Soh.

“With several SD-WAN vendors trying to gain market share, they are working with different channel partners including system integrators, value-added resellers and local providers. Expanded choice is changing buying behaviour.”

The conditions thrust upon enterprises due to the COVID-19 pandemic have also played a major part in convincing IT decision-makers to migrate to SD-WAN.

“It is evident that potentially 80% of the enterprises are considering SD-WAN as an over-the-top (OTT) solution,” says Soh.

“This comes at a time when the network has taken a new importance in the current work-from-home environment.”

As businesses accelerate the migration of IT to the cloud, the underlying network will play an increasingly more important role in connecting applications and data to the end-users.

“SD-WAN has a bigger role to play as businesses look to simplify branch networking, increase the use of cloud-based services and adopt remote working,” concludes Soh.

“As a result, companies need to also have a long-term network strategy instead of treating SD-WAN as a standalone solution which delivers quick fixes.”