Juniper Networks Study Maps Progress Towards The AI-Driven EnterpriseJune 17, 2019 No Comments
by Peter Kelley, Owner, Kelley Group Two
Juniper Networks has released new findings on the status of enterprise digital transformation, cloud migration and AI adoption, Beyond Software-Defined Networking: The AI-Driven Enterprise. 500 IT decision makers at US enterprises were interviewed to determine how their enterprises are progressing towards software defined networks (SDN) and AI.
The study shows that although enterprise networks will be software-defined, there’s a substantial gap between current infrastructures and the cohesive and centrally-managed model that will drive our AI-enabled future. Nearly all businesses — 98 percent — say that they’re using or considering an SDN solution, with many seeing SD-WAN as the entry point. The software-defined network transformation is, however, in its earliest stages.
Only 20 percent report that most of their WANs now use SD-WAN services, 19 percent report having partially deployed SD-WAN services, and another 15 percent are in process with roll outs. Another 34 percent are considering SD-WAN, and only 12 percent say their organizations have no current roll out plans.
SD-Security: It turns out that cybersecurity is a key driver of transformation plans. While 48 percent of respondents see increased agility as the main current advantages of SDN adoption, many enterprises report that cybersecurity will be their biggest reason for making the transition over the next five years. Nearly 40 percent said that an inability to quickly address new threats as a consequence of failing to adopt AI is one of their main concerns.
“SDN is not often associated with greater security but this makes sense when we remember this is an operational transformation,” said Manoj Leelanivas, Juniper Networks EVP and Chief Product Officer. “In security, the challenge lies not in identifying threats or creating solutions, but in applying these solutions to a fragmented network. Streamlining complex security operations, touching many different departments and managing multiple security solutions, is where a software-defined approach can provide the answer.”
Beyond SD-WAN: If SDN is the destination, SD-WAN is the logical first step in getting there: 54 percent of respondents have rolled out or are in the process of rolling out SD-WAN solutions, while an additional 34 percent have it under current consideration. Broad SDN adoption is still over the horizon:
87 percent of respondents say their organizations still manage their networks at the device level. This is key, as it shows the potential of this transformation well beyond the WAN edge.
While many vendors are continuing to strengthen existing SD-WAN offerings, Juniper recently delivered a SD-WAN and SD-Branch solution to unify wide-area routing and security across the branch, campus, data center and cloud.
“Whether you find these results surprising or as expected, they clearly show that a transition is underway,” said Leelanivas.
So, what comes next? Juniper believes its SD-WAN solution sets the stage for operational transformation, and its acquisition of Mist Systems and its AI-powered Wi-Fi solution represents progress toward the AI-driven enterprise.
The Evolving Network: Juniper sees the AI-driven enterprise as one in which the network itself transforms from reactive to proactive and ultimately to adaptive and predictive. “From abstracted controls, to automated workflows and AI-driven experience and insights, we’re quickly moving away from the days of device-by-device management and into a future where security protections learn as fast as threats emerge and networks adapt to assure the best user experience even amid dynamic conditions,” Leelanivas said. “The key to unlocking the future of the network is AI.”