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SD-WAN Supplier Talari Targets Carrier-Leery Enterprises

Kelsey Kusterer Ziser

SD-WAN vendor Talari Networks has launched the seventh generation of its Adaptive Path Networking platform -- APN 7.0 -- this week and also announced a partnership with cloud security vendor Zscaler.

APN 7.0 addresses packet loss at the network edge and provides dynamic adaptive routing of packets. The new release adds WAN optimization services running natively in the core platform. (See Talari Expands SD-WAN Platform & Partner Ecosystem .)

"Where we differentiate ourselves is really when you get right down to what happens when a packet reaches the edge of the network -- what happens to that packet," Atchison Frazer, head of worldwide marketing for Talari Networks, tells Light Reading. "How do you ensure that it takes the most optimal path that accounts for latency problems, jitter... data loss, packet loss, potential congestion with other protocols and the appropriate bandwidth? We address all of that in milliseconds, packet-by-packet through our own proprietary protocol. We're the only ones that do that."

While Frazer says Talari Networks has likely been around the longest of the SD-WAN vendors, going on ten years this year. Gartner analyst Andrew Lerner says their initial offering was likely a subset of today's SD-WAN platform.

"Talari has a solid feature set among SD-WAN vendors, and they’ve been doing dynamic path selection for a long time," Lerner writes in an email to Light Reading. "Talari along with several other vendors like FatPipe and ZeroOutages often claim to have been doing SDWAN for years 'before it was cool,' but in reality, they addressed a subset of what an SD-WAN product is capable of today."

Talari has historically targeted the enterprise branch, and according to Frazer, enterprises have several options when considering a transition from the legacy approach to deploying SD-WAN. Some options include working with a service provider offering SD-WAN as a service or working directly with a vendor like Talari which "can run routing, firewall, our own or Palo Alto Networks on-premises, WAN optimization and SD-WAN, all in one platform and we can bookend your cloud applications if you want that through AWS or Azure, and provide a SD-WAN tunnel into cloud gateways like Zscaler and Palo Alto Networks," he says.

Talari's focus is on enterprise customers that want to preserve their investments in legacy equipment and MPLS -- with added redundancy and reliability -- but don't necessarily want to work with a service provider for SD-WAN, Frazer says.

"They're looking at: 'Well wait a minute, LTE out there is pretty good right now and commodity Internet pretty decent. Maybe my problem isn't my legacy equipment, it's how I'm actually connecting everything,' " he says.

Talari's SD-WAN platform can also be deployed as an overlay in a hybrid WAN model where Talari augments its customer's investment in MPLS.

Many traditional value-added resellers and systems integrators are also looking to position themselves in the managed services market and are adding SD-WAN as a service, Frazer says. Talari and integrator LightEdge Solutions deliver infrastructure-as-a-service to the end user, and in June, Talari also announced an SD-WAN distribution partnership with Tech Data, one of the largest IT distributors in the market.

On the security side, Talari announced an integration with Zscaler in June to provide SD-WAN customers with features like end-to-end data protection for their cloud-based data and applications. This enables Talari's SD-WAN platform to "transparently forward all Internet traffic to the Zscaler Inc. cloud over IPsec tunnels," according to today's release.

Talari has more than 400 enterprise and public sector customers in 40 countries, and more than 9,000 SD-WAN endpoints, which also includes SD-WAN deployed for 911-emergency call centers.

— Kelsey Kusterer Ziser, Senior Editor, Light Reading

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