We’re two for two! This week Gartner published its 2019 Magic Quadrant for WAN Edge Infrastructure, and I’m proud to report that once again Silver Peak has been positioned in the Leader’s quadrant.
Last year Gartner published the inaugural 2018 Magic Quadrant for WAN Edge Infrastructure, providing enterprise decision makers with a comprehensive assessment of the changing requirements for a modern WAN, Gartner listened to thousands of enterprise customers, reviewed each vendor’s solution in detail and analyzed their completeness of vision and ability to execute. The published report talks about Gartner’s view of the Leaders, Challengers, Niche Players and Visionaries in the rapidly changing WAN edge infrastructure market.
Fast-forward a year and the market has continued to evolve at a rapid pace. Customers are more educated. A growing number of enterprises have completed pilots or trials and have become more discerning about how they move forward. There is broad recognition that SD-WAN, while foundational, is only a piece of what is required to build a modern WAN. Enterprises are realizing that the differences across various vendors’ approaches are much greater than what they initially thought.
We believe, as much as the market has evolved and changed, so too has this year’s Gartner Magic Quadrant for WAN Edge Infrastructure. Silver Peak is proud to once again be named as a Leader by Gartner, and one of only two vendors recognized as Leaders.
We’ve seen a major shift in how enterprises justify WAN transformation initiatives. For the last few years, much of the focus has been on cost-savings by reducing a range of costs that include:
- Transport costs by leveraging more economical internet bandwidth to augment or replace MPLS
- Branch capital equipment costs by consolidating routing, optimization and security functionality into a single WAN edge device
- Ongoing operations costs by leveraging advanced automation capabilities
While all of these factors continue to be important, we are seeing a new driver of WAN transformation.
This year more enterprises are coming to the realization that successful digital transformation requires WAN transformation. While the internet and cloud-accessible, shared services provide compelling economics and agility, they come at the expense of control over the quality of experience. A new WAN is required to deliver not just the economic benefits of the cloud, but also to provide a way of extending the application availability and quality associated with MPLS and dedicated data centers to cloud-delivered applications.
At Silver Peak, we talk about this in terms of a Multiplier Effect. By making an internet-based WAN work better, delivering a consistent, high-quality end-user experience, Silver Peak can make a whole host of cloud initiatives more successful. We eliminate the loss of control of user experience that is often associated with internet access. What most enterprises spend on applications and cloud infrastructure far outpaces what they spend on WAN services. So, in essence, an investment in a WAN powered by the Unity EdgeConnect™ SD-WAN edge platform is not just about cost savings, it’s about realizing the full potential of moving to the cloud and delivering a Multiplier Effect on cloud application investments. Just as single sign-on from a provider like Okta is a must-have to make a SaaS-centric IT strategy workable, so too is a modern WAN. IT needs to be able to roll out cloud delivered services without having end users impacted by an inconsistent quality of experience that traces back to the unpredictability of the public internet. By improving the performance, control and reliability of cloud applications and infrastructure investments while gaining the economics and agility of the cloud and broadband technology, enterprises gain higher levels of business productivity. This, in turn, can help drive revenue growth, competitive differentiation and even profitability.
For example, every time the network goes down or application performance is degraded, so too is a company’s ability to achieve maximum productivity levels. But, if you can use broadband and get dedicated-like performance, quality of experience and security for all of the applications, the impact of cloud investments and value dramatically increases across an organization. That’s the Multiplier Effect, and that’s why some of the world’s largest companies are turning to Silver Peak.
People often ask me about competing against the large incumbent vendors, particularly when they have such broad portfolios of products at their disposal, or those that try to add basic SD-WAN-like features to another product. My response is simple. For 15 years we have been focused on one thing: building better WANs for enterprises. Our ability to deliver a Multiplier Effect is one of the key reasons why enterprises turn to Silver Peak. Simply put, more focus means more expertise. Over the coming weeks we’ll be publishing a variety of blogs that expand on how we compete and win in this rapidly evolving market.
Last year we were named a Leader in the very first Gartner Magic Quadrant for WAN Edge Infrastructure. This year, we’re still in the early days of this market, but our focus, our growth, our industry recognition and our ever-expanding list of ecosystem partners has us in a great position yet again. It’s also why we’re confident in our ability to engage in higher level discussions about business value and deliver a Multiplier Effect to our customers that puts us in a great position for the coming year.