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A survey of 400 US businesses finds that about half have plans to adopt software-defined networking (SDN) capabilities.

US Firms Split on SDN: Juniper Survey

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8/1/2014
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SUNNYVALE, Calif. -- Juniper Networks (NYSE: JNPR), the industry leader in network innovation, announced findings from its Software-Defined Networking (SDN) Progress Report that found there are two distinct camps when it comes to adoption of the technology. The study found more than half of U.S. businesses surveyed (52.5 percent) plan to adopt SDN, while the other half (47.5 percent) say they still have no plans to implement the technology.

In the wake of significant discussion in the networking industry about the potential for SDN, Juniper Networks asked 400 IT decision makers (ITDMs) about how they plan to architect their networks in the future.

Of the surveyed companies that have plans to adopt SDN, 74 percent say they plan to do so in within the next year, with 30 percent indicating they plan to make the move in just one month.

However, SDN is not without its challenges and potential barriers as companies drive adoption. Following cost (50 percent), ITDMs noted difficulty integrating with existing systems (35 percent), security concerns (34 percent) and lack of skills from existing employees (28 percent) as the top challenges to adoption of SDN. These perceived challenges may be attributable to the 47.5 percent of respondents who indicated that they do not have plans to deploy SDN-enabled technology.

News Highlights
The survey asked ITDMs to provide their perspectives on SDN readiness, what benefits it presents and the challenges they face.

  • Honor Roll: More than a quarter of surveyed companies (27 percent) report that they are completely ready or almost completely ready to adopt SDN -- giving themselves an "A" or "B" letter grade.
  • Passing Grade: In addition, 38 percent of the ITDMs graded their organization's SDN readiness as a "C" noting that their business was somewhat ready to adopt SDN.
  • The Opportunity: ITDMs surveyed believe the biggest benefit of SDN is improved network performance and efficiency (26 percent), followed by simplified network operations (19 percent) and cost savings on operations (13 percent).
  • SDN Criteria: When asked what their organizations are looking for when adopting SDN, ITDMs reported the following top criteria:
    -- High availability and resiliency (30 percent)
    -- Analytics and reporting (23 percent)
    -- Automation and rapid provisioning (19 percent)
    -- Open source options (12 percent)
    -- Scale (10 percent)
  • Future Outlook: While companies are divided on the short term, looking five years down the road, 77 percent of surveyed respondents believe most business networks will include SDN technology. The SDN Progress Report research is based on online interviews with U.S. based IT decision makers who work in education, financial services, government and healthcare industries. Juniper Networks' survey was conducted in July 2014 by Wakefield Research (www.wakefieldresearch.com), an independent research firm.

    Supporting Quotes:
    "The networking industry is going through a fundamental technology change driven by the need to turn up customer-facing apps more quickly and to simplify network operations. This evolution to SDN will not be overnight, but we're excited to see it happen and to partner with companies to help them realize their full SDN potential." - Mike Marcellin, senior vice president of strategy and marketing for Juniper Networks

    Juniper Research Ltd.

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