Vonage is ramping up its competitive edge in the crowded business-communications space by leveraging software-defined WAN technology to boost the voice and video quality and reliability of cloud-based unified communications.
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Last week, the voice over IP company announced that it would provide SD-WAN-based services to businesses starting next month. Vonage built the service, called SmartWAN, on technology from SD-WAN startup VeloCloud.
VeloCloud's cloud-based service constantly evaluates the best path to send data packets across a network. Vonage is leveraging VeloCloud technology to deliver unified communications systems more efficiently.
How SD-WAN improves unified communications systems
SD-WAN improves the quality of UC by automatically configuring WAN edge routers to find the best path for running traffic over a hybrid of wired and wireless broadband and private MPLS links. Managing multiple connections is one of SD-WAN's biggest draws.
With SD-WAN, "It's a lot easier to have multiple access connections at a location and leverage them all to send traffic," said Andrew Lerner, analyst for Gartner.
The same report said SD-WAN is most beneficial to businesses with one or some of the following motivations: moving to a hybrid WAN network to support cloud-based services, looking to reduce carrier service budgets or complexity of WANs and having a large number of remote branches.
Those businesses can reduce costs by as much as 40% by eliminating hardware and managing their WANs more efficiently. Additionally, the report said businesses could cut provisioning time by as much as 80%.
Through SD-WAN, Vonage is likely to improve overall service performance for its customers, said Lee Doyle, an analyst at Doyle Research in Wellesley, Mass. "They'll see an improvement in service."
Learn more about SD-WAN vendors
The different flavors of the new WAN
Traffic management with SD-WAN