Cisco, HPE, Nokia Lead SDN Orchestration in New Study

The 83 percent global growth rate does not come without growing pains.

James Anderson, Senior News Editor

January 11, 2018

2 Min Read
Software-Defined Networking

Demand for equipment and services that manage and coordinate software-defined networking (SDN) is growing rapidly.

A new study by MarketsandMarkets values the SDN orchestration market at close to $215 million, but predicts that it will increase to $4.6 billion by 2022. That’s annual growth of 83 percent.

The study says businesses are more and more interested in automating and simplifying their network infrastructures, leading to the rise of SDN orchestration.

“Moreover, the rising demand for simplified SDN architecture, which is easy to manage with a reduced number of managed devices and an abstract complexity of the network topology, is also contributing to the growth of the SDN orchestration market across the globe,” the report says.

MarketsandMarkets taps small and medium-size businesses (SMBs) as the fastest growing segment of adopters. The market research firm labels Asia as the fastest growing region, due to an increasing amount of data centers in the same area.

The 83 percent global growth rate, however, does not come without growing pains. SDN orchestration is still a “nascent” technology in its early stages, and therefore its security apparatus is also a work in progress.

“… Use of this technology can often lead to hacking of data and networks; thus, the security of the vulnerable data is a major concern with the use of SDN orchestration technology,” MarketsandMarkets writes. “SDN orchestration is used for network virtualization, thus creating hundreds or thousands of networks together. Several vendors and service providers have included security platforms and services, along with their solution suites and service offerings to enhance their SDN orchestration offerings in the market.”

The study lists 12 vendors as major players in SDN orchestration: Cisco, Nokia, Ciena, Juniper Networks, Huawei, Netcracker, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, CENX, Virtela, QualiSystems, Anuta Networks and Zymr.

That’s a similar company list to one of the more recent studies on record. IHS Markit asked global service providers which orchestration vendors they preferred, and the survey found that Cisco, Nokia, Ciena, Juniper and Huawei were the most popular (see the graphic below). Cisco took the top spot, with more than 60 percent of the respondents naming it in their top three choices.


2016 SDN Orchestration Market Study (IHS Markit)


MarketsandMarkets appears to be doing its first study on the topic of SDN orchestration, but it has produced multiple reports on SD-WAN and other software-defined technologies. The organization analyzed SDN and network functions virtualization (NFV) last summer and said the entire market was worth $3.7 billion. SDN and NFV are expected to grow at a rapid rate over the next five years.

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About the Author(s)

James Anderson

Senior News Editor, Channel Futures

James Anderson is a news editor for Channel Futures. He interned with Informa while working toward his degree in journalism from Arizona State University, then joined the company after graduating. He writes about SD-WAN, telecom and cablecos, technology services distributors and carriers. He has served as a moderator for multiple panels at Channel Partners events.

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