Peter Coppens, director of Ethernet & IP products at Colt, said in an email to SDxCentral, “We did an initial offering for hybrid networking…using proprietary CPE routers and not general purpose x86 open CPE server platforms. However, this approach did show clear limitations, which is why we turned to a more step-change, greenfield implementation with Versa now.”
The SD-WAN offering announced today enables business customers to combine dedicated data connections, such as MPLS, with less expensive Internet links in their wide area network.
For customer sites that are directly connected with Colt fiber, bandwidth already scales in a cost-efficient way. Now, with the introduction of SD-WAN, connections via the public Internet can be leveraged for applications that are not latency critical. This results in a hybrid network where critical data traverses MPLS and non-critical data is offloaded to the public Internet. But data over the Internet is still secured by using IPSec tunnels; and the customer is free to use their existing Internet service provider if they so wish.
In addition to the SD-WAN overlay for connectivity, other functions being offered by Colt, NFV-style, on the general purpose x86 CPE at customer sites are:
- Load balancing
- Backup path
- Application visibility
- Virtual firewalling
In the European Union, over 70 percent of enterprises are outsourcing the delivery and management of their WAN to a service provider, according to Colt’s recent statistics on its enterprise base of more than 10,000 customers across Europe.