I’ve been spending some time the past few weeks researching the potential role of SD-WAN in enabling service providers to augment existing managed private cloud connect services with a “managed Over-The-Top (OTT) cloud connect service.” What if managed service providers could expand their managed cloud connect service offers to include an OTT Cloud Connect service powered by SD-WAN?
Today, most managed service providers offer a private cloud connect service that enables enterprises to securely connect their on-net sites to their cloud-destined application traffic, leveraging the provider’s MPLS or Ethernet network. The applications are then backhauled to the closest provider PoP, where the service provider has “direct connects” to each of the major IaaS (AWS, Azure & Google Cloud) and some SaaS providers (SFDC, Oracle, SAP).
Do private cloud connect services really address all the requirements for optimized connectivity of all cloud-enabled applications, including support for off-net locations?
An enterprise IT executive should consider two other important factors before selecting a managed cloud connect service provider:
- Can I connect all employees to all applications, from any on-net or off-net location to any cloud provider, public or private?
- Can I support application performance metrics and SLAs for all cloud applications?
According to Frost & Sullivan industry director for business communication services and cloud computing, Roopa Honnachari, “A managed SD-WAN solution that optimizes hybrid WANs (OTT/Private links) for cloud connectivity, for both on-net and off-net sites can act as a service differentiator, as it eliminates the need for private links, such as MPLS, for cloud connectivity at all sites
Managed private cloud connect solutions must address the following requirements:
- Support high-performance, low latency cloud connectivity for all enterprise application traffic from off-net sites
- Offer SLAs for the off-net cloud connect backhaul
- Deliver guaranteed application performance and availability for all the enterprise SaaS cloud service providers, regardless of the underlay network
- Rapidly support new SaaS providers with their direct connect agreements – conventional private cloud connect agreements per SaaS provider can take 6-12 months in some cases
- Support secure IPsec connectivity for locations that utilize broadband
A managed service provider can optimize managed cloud connectivity service use cases for both private and OTT cloud connect with the Silver Peak® Unity EdgeConnect SD-WANSP solution. This solution enables service providers to rapidly and cost-effectively deploy new, differentiated, SD-WAN services. It also expands the market reach to out-of-region, creating new revenue streams and improving the customer experience with connecting to cloud-hosted applications.
Service providers can leverage EdgeConnect™ intent-based policies to automatically steer these cloud apps over off-net broadband or other service provider network underlays, without the need to backhaul every cloud application to the service provider’s private cloud connect service. Service providers can, in fact, offer application SLAs for these off-net OTT Cloud connect sites in addition to the on-net sites. This improves the enterprise customer experience and eliminates the complexity of integrating direct connects to every cloud provider, thereby reducing service provider OPEX.
Service providers can also generate incremental off-net OTT cloud connect service revenues for additional SaaS applications, without having to negotiate direct connect agreements for every SaaS application provider, therefore improving time-to-service for branch to SaaS connectivity.
The overall service provider business benefits from an OTT Cloud Connect service enabled by the Silver Peak SD-WAN solution include:
- Increasing cloud connect service revenues
- Driving additional SD-WAN service revenues
- Accelerating cloud connect service rollouts with SaaS providers
In fact, some of our service provider partners deploying a managed SD-WAN service powered by EdgeConnectSP will expand their managed SD-WAN service to support this unique OTT cloud connect service.