Now that Cisco has purchased Viptela’s software-defined wide area networking technology (SD-WAN), it gives Orange Business Services more options for its enterprise customers. Orange said today that it conducted the first on-boarding of a Cisco SD-WAN virtual network function (VNF) on Cisco Enterprise Network Compute System (ENCS) hardware.
Orange began assessing the Viptela technology as soon as Cisco announced its acquisition of Viptela, said Laurent Perrin, product management director of application driven networking at Orange Business Services. “Viptela is advanced and robust SD-WAN,” he said. “We also believe that Cisco together with Viptela will be a strong player in this market.”
The Cisco ENCS hardware with Viptela software is a good option for medium to large businesses. It gives them the ability to deploy additional functions such as security.
For smaller sites with simple requirements, Orange is offering Viptela vEdge hardware and Viptela software.
In addition, Orange will continue with its current strategy of offering SD-WAN to customers that want to use their existing Cisco routers. Previously, these customers used Cisco IWAN technology on their Cisco routers. But now, these same routers can be updated with Viptela SD-WAN software.
Cisco told SDxCentral in December that it was integrating Viptela software natively onto some of its routing platforms. Existing routers will get a software upgrade to support SD-WAN said Ramesh Prabagaran, senior director of product for Cisco SD-WAN.
“We plan to use the Viptela software in these Cisco routers to migrate customers using existing equipment,” said Perrin. “This is planned in the Cisco roadmap starting in Q1.”
Orange’s SD-WAN allows enterprises to manage and optimize their transport connections, including MPLS, Internet, and satellite.
Satellite transport is not typically mentioned by other SD-WAN vendors or customers. But Perrin said, “We are quite present in regions like the Middle East and Africa where we have a big existing base of satellite services. In our business VPN offering we provide MPLS, but we have also integrated satellite as an access mode, which is quite unique in our market. We see this as a requirement from our customers.”
He said it wasn’t a problem to include satellite connectivity with SD-WAN. “We don’t see major differences to use satellite,” he said. “It’s not something specific from a technical standpoint.”