Expanded partnership also includes offering virtualization pioneer’s SASE components on Equinix Network Edge
Customers using Equinix’s Network Edge platform will now be able to leverage VMware’s software-defined WAN (SD-WAN) technology as a virtual network function (VNF), part of an expanded relationship between the two companies.
The Lowdown: In addition, VMware is expanding its global reach across Equinix’s International Business Exchange (IBX) and will make its secure-access service edge (SASE) offerings available through the Network Edge and Equinix’s Cloud Exchange Fabric (ECX Fabric).
The Details: The new offerings announced this week build on a relationship between Equinix and VMware that dates back to 2013. By offering VMware SD-WAN by VeloCloud on its Network Edge, Equinix provides users with an enterprise-grade virtual SD-WAN service that enables them to manage their relationships with various cloud service providers through the ECX Fabric or the Equinix Marketplace, an important capability for enterprises that are rapidly adopting hybrid cloud and multicloud strategies.
By using SD-WAN as a service, they’re able to improve application performance for remote workers through fast and secure site-to-application capabilities at the edge through a private interconnection.
VMware’s SASE components now available via Network Edge, ECX Fabric, and other connectivity options can be managed through the VMware Orchestrator portal. In addition, the extension of VMware technology through Equinix’s IBX data centers will be global and reach across the Americas, Europe, the Asia-Pacific region, and the Middle East.
The Impact: The COVID-19 pandemic has slowed SD-WAN momentum, but the ongoing adoption of the cloud, the growth of the network edge, and the increasingly distributed nature of workforces will continue to drive demand for the technology, which improves security, management, cost savings, and cloud application performance. Market research firm Futuriom is forecasting the market for SD-WAN tools and software to grow about 34% a year, from $2 billion this year to $4.6 billion by 2023. A survey by Futuriom found that 92% of respondents said they’re evaluating SD-WAN services or software.
Background: Equinix rolled out Network Edge last year to complement its ECX Fabric and has been building its SD-WAN capabilities on top of it. Earlier this year, Fortinet said it was offering its SD-WAN solution as a service on the Network Edge platform.
VMware, which already had a presence in the software-defined networking (SDN) space with its NSX offering, muscled its way into the crowded SD-WAN market with its 2017 acquisition of VeloCloud, part of the virtualization giant’s larger push to become a provider of hybrid cloud solutions.
The Buzz: “We are thrilled to work with Equinix to help enterprises accelerate their digital transformation initiatives and offer new world-class capabilities within the Equinix IBX facilities,” said Sanjay Uppal, senior vice president and general manager of VMware’s VeloCloud Business Unit. “With VMware SD-WAN Edge now available as a virtual network service on Equinix’s Network Edge, enterprises, partners, and service providers alike will be able to have unique, globally available network solutions optimized for intrinsically secure access to any public, private, or SaaS cloud for remote and branch users.”
“An entire architectural shift driven by data transformation is happening across the IT landscape today,” said Bill Long, senior vice president of product management at Equinix. “By expanding our collaboration with VMware to deliver an innovative new solution that empowers remote workforces, reduces disruption, and enables business continuity, we can help companies deploy a digital-ready infrastructure at the edge within minutes in order to accelerate their digital transformation efforts anywhere in the world.”
“Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the long-term growth prospects for the SD-WAN market remain exceptionally robust. Driven by the ubiquitous imperative of digital transformation, a growing number of organizations worldwide are looking to scale initial deployments, which often begin with a limited number of sites, to encompass all branch offices supported by their WAN,” said Brad Casemore, research vice president for data center networks at IDC. “As they do so, they prize agility, resilience, and operational simplicity. VMware’s SD-WAN by VeloCloud solution, now available on Equinix’s Network Edge, is designed to address those needs and help organizations dynamically scale their IT infrastructure in lockstep with the demands of digital business.”