Wireless Drives Enterprise Networking Sector Gains

Carl Weinschenk
Slide Show

7 Predictions on How NFV and SDN Will Mature

Technology Business Research found that the enterprise networking market grew during the first six months of the year. The key driver of the spending was the desire to add wireless capacity, according to Network Computing. The report found that companies spent $31.5 billion from January to the end of June, which was a 6 percent year-to-year increase.

Additional WLAN spending is aimed at enabling these networks to support Big Data, enhance mobile productivity and improve responsiveness, according to Krista Macomber, a TBR data center analyst.

Macomber suggested that a long-term transition to software-defined networks (SDN) is expected, but that changes in spending so far are incremental as the industry avoids “rip and replace” scenarios and tests the new approaches’ benefits.

What the New Nokia Will Look Like


A vision of how Nokia will look after the acquisition of Alcatel-Lucent closes came into focus this week. eWeek says the expansive company’s lines of products will be divided in this manner:

  • The Mobile Networks group will include the radio properties (from Alcatel-Lucent) and subscriber management equipment.
  • The Fixed Network group will handle Alcatel-Lucent’s fixed network business, which includes copper and fiber access products and services.
  • The Applications and Analytics group will include software and analytics from both companies.
  •  The IP/Optical Networks will include IP routing and optical transport and IP video business from Alcatel-Lucent. It also will manage Nuage, Alcatel-Lucent’s software-defined networking (SDN) startup. It will include Nokia’s IP partner and packet core products. 

Cisco Winning Early in the SDN Game

Network World reports that Cisco and its ACI platform have quite a lead on VMware’s NSX in the software-defined networking track. Cisco just announced its 1,000th customer, while NSX currently has just over 700.

The systems for the most part haven’t been fully deployed, however:

But production deployments are a fraction of the combined installed base. Only 15% of the 1,700 ACI/NSX users are implementing the products in production mode: 150 for ACI, according to Cisco, and 100 for NSX. VMware says it is adding 25 to 50 production customers per quarter, however. Cisco says production use is low because the market is so young -- less than two years old for ACI and NSX -- and testing and budgeting cycles can be long.

Apple Pay Not Paying Off

Bloomberg reported earlier this week that the Aite Group found that Apple Pay has accounted for only 1 percent of retail transactions in the United States. The problem has been retailer adoption and lack of promotion.

Apple is moving forward with the project, however. Reuters reports that Starbucks will run a pilot program next year and that the payment method will be used by KFC and Chili’s restaurants.

Reuters reiterates the challenges facing the system. It suggests that Apple’s optimism in dubbing 2015 “the year of Apple Pay” was premature and met by retailer skepticism.

SDNs Can Be Useful Security Tools

SDNs may be touted as the wave of the future, but Reg Lo, director of VMware Accelerate Advisory Services, brought more clarity with some insight into a key use of the new approach to networking.

According to the company blog, using SDN to micro-segment the network is a good idea, because it doesn’t involve changes to the existing network and can be approached incrementally. Lo suggests five micro-segmentation steps: Identify the top 10 critical apps, locate them, create a security group for each, use SDN to define a security policy for each group that enables any-to-any traffic and inspect logs and define security policy.

Carl Weinschenk covers telecom for IT Business Edge. He writes about wireless technology, disaster recovery/business continuity, cellular services, the Internet of Things, machine-to-machine communications and other emerging technologies and platforms. He also covers net neutrality and related regulatory issues. Weinschenk has written about the phone companies, cable operators and related companies for decades and is senior editor of Broadband Technology Report. He can be reached at cweinsch@optonline.net and via twitter at @DailyMusicBrk.



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