The team at Citrix found that cloud usage will significantly rise by 2021 in its Cloud Index Report. According to its study, “global cloud IP traffic will account for 95 percent of total data center traffic” by that year. Not only does the company investigate the future trajectory of cloud computing, but it also modifies its cloud management service to account for the growing demand for the cloud. Part of its strategy is to incorporate software-defined wide access networking (SD-WAN) to address the needs of future technology, such as the Internet of Things (IoT).
Citrix Cloud and SD-WAN
According to RightScale, 81 percent of enterprise use the multi-cloud, which is when an enterprise uses multiple clouds provided by different cloud service providers. Citrix looks to SD-WAN as a performance-enhancer to the multi-cloud. In a blog post, the company identifies three central interrelated reasons as to why SD-WAN is beneficial to multi-cloud environments: reliability, quality of experience, and efficiency and security. These benefits are interrelated as efficiency combined with security and reliability generates a positive quality of experience for both enterprises and end-users.
SD-WAN streamlines the multi-cloud because the “traffic is routed along the most efficient paths, and users can scale up connectivity when they experience extreme demand.” The increased reliability of SD-WAN plus its security features, such as end-to-end encryption and an integrated firewall, drive forward the productivity of the multi-cloud architecture, which enhances the end user’s experience overall.
Strategic SD-WAN Partnerships with Citrix Cloud
In its quest to deliver SD-WAN, Citrix partnered with other leading technology companies such as Microsoft and Palo Alto Networks.
In July 2018, the company teamed up with Microsoft to deliver Azure Virtual WAN. The product allows for enterprises to either customize their SD-WAN or to use a managed cloud service. The two companies joined forces again in collaborating on Microsoft’s Office 365 product. “Citrix SD-WAN leverages Microsoft’s 130+ worldwide edge nodes allowing customers to connect into the nearest Office 365 entry point.”
Citrix also collaborated with Palo Alto Networks to enhance enterprise security across an enterprise’s branch networks. Its method to boost security is to use Citrix’s SD-WAN to locate applications and to leverage deep packet inspection (DPI) “for real-time discovery and classification of applications.”