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VMware, Cisco Lead SD-WAN Market

Software-defined networking

One research company says VMware and Cisco are the clear leaders in software-defined wide area networking (SD-WAN) following recent acquisitions.

IHS Markit said on Wednesday that VMware’s recent purchase of VeloCloud Networks and Cisco’s purchase of Viptela earlier this year have established the two companies at the top of the SD-WAN industry. VMware announced plans to buy VeloCloud Nov. 2.

IHS Markit's Cliff Grossner

IHS Markit’s Cliff Grossner

“VMware and Cisco have acquired the two SD-WAN market share leaders, making the SD-WAN market a two-horse race for the No. 1 spot,” said Cliff Grossner, senior research director and adviser for cloud and data center at IHS Markit. “And we could see even more consolidation as vendors set out to add SD‑WAN to their capability sets, especially since the technology is key to supporting connectivity in the multi-clouds that enterprises are building.”

It’s not a difficult stretch for IHS Market to name VMware and Cisco the leaders, because VeloCloud and Viptela were the No.1 and No. 2 revenue-earning SD-WAN providers before they were acquired. The biannual market tracker from IHS Market shows SD-WAN accounting for $137 million in the first half of 2017 and primed for more acquisitions. The report also predicts virtual network function solutions to become “more closely integrated with carrier operations support systems and business support systems.”

“Currently, the majority of SD-WAN revenue is from appliances, with early deployments focused on rolling out devices at branch offices,” Grossner said. “Moving forward, we expect a larger portion of SD-WAN revenue to come from control and management software as users increasingly adopt application visibility and analytics services.”

The study also lists Cisco as the revenue leader for in-use software-defined networking, with Arista, White Box, VMware and HPE trailing.

Read reactions to the VMware-VeloCloud deal in our latest SD-WAN column.


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