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Firm Ranks Managed SD-WAN Service Providers

Research firm Vertical Systems Group has published what it claims to be the first benchmark for Software-Defined Wide-Area-Networking (SD-WAN) services.

AT&T tops the leaderboard, which focuses on U.S. carrier-managed SD-WAN services as of year-end 2018, though it was just published May 22.

SD-WAN has emerged to lead the penetration of disruptive, new-age, software-centric networking into the enterprise, providing an onramp for adoption of software-defined networking (SDN).

Along with publishing its leaderboard to rank SD-WAN providers, though, Vertical Systems Group had to define exactly what SD-WAN means, an effort we just recently detailed here.

"Vertical Systems Group defines a Carrier Managed SD-WAN Service as a carrier-grade offering for business customers that is managed by a network operator, utilizes an SDN architecture, enables dynamic customer edge site connectivity, and provides centralized network control and visibility end-to-end," the May 22 announcement states. "This definition aligns with MEF terminology for an SD-WAN service."

Indeed, the industry association MEF is in the midst of finalizing an SD-WAN service standard, defining the term as "An application-aware, policy-driven connectivity service, offered by a Service Provider, that optimizes transport of IP Packets over multiple underlay networks. MEF SD-WAN Services are specified using Service Attributes defined in this MEF Standard."

Vertical Systems Group's leaderboard lists the top providers as:

  1. AT&T
  2. Hughes
  3. Verizon
  4. Windstream
  5. CenturyLink
  6. Aryaka
  7. Fusion
  8. Comcast

The next level of providers, dubbed the Challenge Tier, consists of this alphabetical ordering:

  • Bigleaf
  • GTT
  • Masergy
  • Meriplex
  • Sprint
  • TPx

The company announced the leaderboard to promote its for-pay research that takes into account factors such as revenue, billable sites, customer counts, WAN access connections, pricing by type, migration drivers to SD-WAN and several more.

More information on the company's research can be found here.

About the Author

David Ramel is an editor and writer for Converge360.

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