Embracing the Future: The Integration of 4G and 5G Services with SD-WAN Solutions in Enterprise IT

In today’s business landscape, more and more enterprise organizations are using 4G and 5G services to connect corporate sites to a WAN. According to new market research conducted by Enterprise Management Associates (EMA), a staggering 86% of enterprise IT organizations are incorporating these wireless services into their WANs.

The importance of cellular networks in filling the gap of unreliable wireline bandwidth is undeniable. One of the main reasons for the increasing use of cellular networks is their ability to provide connectivity in areas where reliable wireline bandwidth is unavailable. In remote or rural areas or during emergency situations, wireline connections may not be accessible, but cellular networks provide a reliable and stable backup option.

Agility of Cellular Connections as a Primary Connection over Business Broadband or MPLS Circuit

Another significant advantage of cellular connections is their agility, delivering connectivity in hours rather than the weeks or months it takes to provision a business broadband or MPLS circuit. This enables businesses to rapidly respond to new opportunities or changing demands, significantly improving their agility and responsiveness.

The role of SD-WAN in the success of wireless WAN adoption

EMA believes that software-defined WAN (SD-WAN) will be instrumental in the success of expanded wireless WAN adoption. SD-WAN technology provides centralized management and virtualization of network functionality, enabling IT organizations to simplify WAN deployments while enhancing performance and security.

Benefits of Incorporating Wireless WAN Services into SD-WAN

By incorporating wireless WAN services into SD-WAN, IT organizations can extend SD-WAN capabilities to these cellular connections. This includes centralized configuration management, monitoring, and network security, thus helping to reduce complexity and improve visibility, making it easier to manage and secure network connections.

The Challenge of Integrating Cellular Services into a Hybrid WAN

Most SD-WAN solutions are adept at incorporating wireline circuits, but fewer are particularly strong at incorporating cellular services into a hybrid WAN. The integration of cellular services into an existing WAN infrastructure can be more challenging than wireline connections, which tend to be more stable and predictable.

The Criticality of Good Integration between SD-WAN and 4G/5G Connectivity

Good integration between SD-WAN and 4G/5G connectivity will be critical in the future. IT organizations should seek out SD-WAN solutions that provide robust cellular connectivity with advanced features such as dynamic link bonding, traffic steering, and failover mechanisms.

The Importance of Making Cellular Services a Part of SD-WAN Strategy Now and for Future WAN Implementations

If your cellular services play a role in your WAN today or in the future, you should make it a part of your SD-WAN strategy now. By doing so, you can improve management and visibility while reducing complexity and enhancing security. As cellular connectivity becomes more prevalent, it will become increasingly critical to incorporate it into WAN management plans.

The Negative Impact of Using Multiple SD-WAN Vendors on Overall SD-WAN Success

Enterprises that use multiple SD-WAN vendors have reported that their overall SD-WAN implementations are less successful, according to EMA. Multiple vendors can create compatibility issues and increase complexity, resulting in reduced performance, security, and visibility.

As wireless WAN adoption continues to grow, IT organizations should proactively devise their SD-WAN strategies. By incorporating cellular services into SD-WAN architecture, organizations can simplify and enhance their WAN deployments while improving management and security. Additionally, using a single SD-WAN vendor can increase the overall success of the WAN deployment, reducing complexity, and increasing visibility. With careful planning and attention to detail, IT organizations can create agile, flexible, and secure WANs that meet the evolving needs of modern businesses.

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