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In common with most other software-defined applications, SD-WAN systems streamline and simplify deployment and management processes -- in this case of hybrid WANs -- allowing IT departments to quickly and securely deliver on-premise or cloud-hosted applications.
The market for SD-WANs is expected to grow substantially over the next four years -- with 30% of enterprises anticipated to be using SD-WAN products in their branch offices by 2020, up from 1% today, according to recent Gartner statistics.
Riverbed has already moved into the market, announcing its Project Tiger SD-WAN initiative in the autumn of 2015.
Through the initiative it hopes to market a suite of application-centric SD-WAN systems that will complement its application performance platform, eliminate the need for traditional branch routing hardware, offer zero-touch provisioning and management, and agile service-chaining for services and applications.
Project Tiger is expected to come to market sometime before the end of March 2016. Riverbed said that the addition of Ocedo's software-defined branch office networking system -- which includes gateways, wireless access points, switches and cloud management -- would accelerate the process.
"Ocedo is a compelling and strategic acquisition for Riverbed. Their innovative software-defined networking systems perfectly complement our own strategic investments in research and development," said Riverbed CEO Jerry Kennelly.
Read more about SD-WAN technology
- More than just a buzzword, software-defined WAN is delivering benefits to early adopters. However, skeptics warn that it's no magical elixir.
- Software-defined WAN controllers can send data streams over multiple links, which helps boost aggregate bandwidth and network reliability, while also streamlining UC traffic.
- Vonage is using technology from SD-WAN startup VeloCloud to up the performance of its cloud-based UC systems.
"This will expand our position to aggressively compete in the emerging markets for software-defined networks and SD-WAN, bringing disruption to the multi-billion dollar branch router market," said Kennelly.
"As the industry goes through one of the largest transformations in a decade, with cloud and hybrid IT environments requiring a different approach to networking, Riverbed is well positioned to help businesses reap the benefits of newer and superior network architectures that are application-centric and software-defined."
ZK Research's Zeus Kerravala commented: "Coupled with Riverbed's industry-leading portfolio of application performance infrastructure, this move solidifies Riverbed's position as a trusted provider of innovative and high performance network software systems at a critical time when enterprises are looking to deploy next-generation networks."