Opinion

Affordable Software-Defined WAN Regardless of Net Neutrality

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Internet service providers petitioned the U.S. Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit to delay the Federal Communications Commission implementation of net neutrality rules, which were due to begin June 12. 

While the fight over net neutrality may rage on in legal circles for months — or even years — technology continues to move forward and beyond the public-policy debate. 

While ISPs want to be able to force customers to purchase “fast lanes” for bandwidth-hungry Web-based services and applications, businesses must continue to ensure that critical Web-based services and applications — video chat and conferencing, VoIP, online calling services and virtual desktops — run consistently and perform well. 

In the past, companies had two choices: buy an expensive, fast, private line costing $300+ per month for minimal speed or use inexpensive, unreliable public broadband.   

Of course, traditional Internet broadband generally fails to perform reliably at the business-grade level required to run critical services and applications, so private T-1 lines, running at minimum 1.5Mbps, became the de facto enterprise standard. 

Over the last 12 months, several companies (mine included) began offering SD-WAN (Software-Defined Wide Area Networking), a new network overlay technology, that lets companies get better-than-private line speed and performance using low-cost public broadband services. The technology also has a compounding positive effect; when there is competition and more than one broadband line is available, SD-WAN makes the bundle perform much better than each line on its own. 

The benefits of SD-WAN simply make the net neutrality fight outcome irrelevant for most enterprises.    

Sanjay Uppal is CEO and co-founder of VeloCloud, the cloud networking services company in Mountain View, Calif. Contact him at suppal@velocloud.net.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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