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‘Confusion Rampant’ Around SASE, the Evolution of SD-WAN

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Service edge

SMBs will lead the charge toward secure access service edge (SASE) adoption, according to a new study.

Dell’Oro Group on Thursday shared results from its SASE 5-Year Forecast Advanced Research Report. The research firm predicting the market to grow at compounded annual growth rate of 116% through 2024.

While Dell’Oro does project large enterprise to adopt SASE, research director Mauricio Sanchez, said SMBs face less obstacles in converging their technology stack.

Sanchez, Mauricio_Dell'Oro

Dell’Oro’s Mauricio Sanchez

Dell’Oro defines secure access service edge (SASE) as the cloud-based integration of networking and security offerings like SD-WAN secure web gateway and firewall. As a result, SASE promotes a more secure, flexible and scalable network with a lower cost of ownership.

“SASE holds great appeal because it unifies and simplifies networking and security across a wide variety of network use cases, ranging from larger headquarter/branch networks down to individual users,” said Sanchez said.

Convergence

Sanchez wrote that although the networking and security industries have put forth advancements like SD-WAN, zero-trust architecture and cloud-based secure web gateway, those offerings remain in “long-standing operational silos.” But SASE exists to bring together the best of networking and security. And according to Dell’Oro, both industries are paying close attention.

“Since the arrival of SASE, the number of vendors touting SASE solutions and technologies has exploded. Confusion is rampant as vendors interpret SASE differently to fit their current solutions and strategies best,” Sanchez wrote. “Understanding which vendors deliver on the SASE vision is difficult, and sizing the market opportunity is next to impossible.”

Sanchez pointed to the mass movement to the cloud, which has rendered legacy network topologies “inadequate” in many cases.

“The decades-old hub-and-spoke network topology has come under performance, cost, and operational pressures,” Sanchez said.

And the same goes for the traditional security architecture, whose “centralized security stack” can’t cover the many distributed users and devices that reside outside the campus.

Dell’Oro also concluded that software sales in this market will vastly outweigh hardware sales. However, initially software will predominantly pair with physical appliances until software-as-a-service takes over in the long-term.

On a slightly related note, Dell’Oro shared its SD-WAN forecast a few months ago. The study projected double-digit growth to raise the market to $3.2 billion in 2024.

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