Enterprise Networking Services

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Enterprise Networking Services 2024-05-26T19:08:06-07:00

Advanced Enterprise Networking Services: The Digital Backbone of Your Future

The Potential of Enterprise Networking Services

Advanced networking services by Ubiquitous Networks is the unsung hero of our digital future, offering a continuum of connectivity that drives the development of new products and services while transforming inefficient operating models. Technologies dependent on data and networking—such as IoT, blockchain, advanced analytics, and cognitive computing—are increasingly fueling the adoption of connectivity advancements. Next-generation technologies like 5G, low Earth orbit satellites, mesh networks, edge computing, and ultra-broadband solutions promise significant improvements in reliable, high-performance communication capabilities. Software-defined networking (SDN) and network function virtualization (NFV) help companies manage these evolving connectivity options. In the coming months, expect to see companies across sectors and geographies leveraging advanced connectivity to configure and operate tomorrow’s enterprise networks.

The Importance of Networking in Digital Transformation

Traditionally, networking has lived in the shadow of high-profile disruptive technologies like digital experiences, cognitive computing, and cloud solutions that capture imaginations and headlines. However, networking, though mission-critical, is about to step into the spotlight. Increasingly, technology forces dependent on networking are transforming enterprise architecture. For example, proliferating mobile devices, sensors, serverless computing, exploding volumes of shared data, and automation all require advanced connectivity and differentiated networking. Advanced connectivity is fast becoming a linchpin of digital business. In TechTarget’s most recent IT Priorities Survey, 44 percent of respondents cited upgrading their networking foundations as a top priority for the coming year. Similarly, a 2018 survey by Interop ITX and InformationWeek found that companies are increasingly focused on adding bandwidth, modernizing their networks with software, and expanding their networking capabilities.

The CIO’s Role in Advanced Connectivity

One of the CIO’s primary responsibilities is to ensure data is efficiently transferred from collection points to analysis centers and where it is needed to drive real-time decisions and automated operations—at scale and speed, in a data center, in the cloud, or at the edge where business occurs. Building and maintaining the necessary networking capabilities to meet this responsibility is a growing priority. CIOs are developing connectivity strategies that support their broader digital agendas. They are exploring opportunities to use SDN, NFV, and network slicing to build controllable, secure, distributed networks featuring various devices and utilizing distributed computing power. They are also defining the roles that evolving access mechanisms such as 5G and low Earth orbit satellites will play in their connectivity strategies, maintaining control over these networking components without increasing the cost of ownership.

Transforming Organizational Agility with Advanced Networking

Networking models featuring SDN, NFV, and other advanced connectivity components can transform an organization’s agility, efficiency, and competitiveness. However, this transformation is contingent upon reliably delivering connectivity, security, and performance seamlessly to end users and applications. Often, the expectation behind every digital experience is the infinite availability and omnipresence of seamless network connectivity. When this expectation cannot be met, the experience—and the strategy behind it—fail.

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The 5G Revolution

The Impact of 5G

The orders-of-magnitude performance boost that 5G promises is unprecedented. Soon, low-orbit satellite-based connectivity and mesh networks will deliver 5G capabilities to locations that currently have only limited coverage. Within the next 18 to 24 months, expect more companies to embrace the connectivity trend by exploring how advanced networking capabilities can enhance products, services, and enterprise architectures.

Building Your Connectivity Strategy

From a strategy perspective, if you are in an industry that can benefit from greater bandwidth and more digital technology capabilities in your stores, warehouses, field operations, or across your global networks, what does this trend mean for your company’s future? How will you build your connectivity strategy to take advantage of these advancements?

Connectivity Building Blocks

Advanced connectivity raises the bar on network flexibility, allowing networks to be configured to fit different performance and availability requirements. Network management frameworks enable companies to dynamically configure and control network resources through software. As they develop advanced networking strategies, CIOs should examine how the following core capabilities can advance their digital transformation agendas.

Key Components of Advanced Connectivity

  1. 5G: The fifth generation of cellular wireless technology offers greater speed, lower latency, and the ability to connect massive numbers of sensors and smart devices within a network. 5G acts as a unifying technology, bringing together all the networking capabilities needed to manage information flow and density at scale. It also lowers power requirements for base communication, extending sensor battery life and enabling many IoT use cases.
  2. Low Earth Orbit Satellites: Small, low Earth orbit satellites, deployed in clusters, can deliver high-performance broadband anywhere on earth. They provide access to rural or isolated communities and serve as essential networking infrastructure for industries operating in remote areas such as energy, mining, transportation, and finance.
  3. Software-Defined Networking (SDN): SDN is a software layer that sits atop a physical network, allowing centralized programming and management of network functions. It boosts network flexibility and is now being extended for wide area networking (SD-WAN) to connect data centers, branch offices, and other multilocation applications.
  4. Network Function Virtualization (NFV): NFV replaces physical network appliances with virtualized software, providing functions such as routing, switching, encryption, firewalling, WAN acceleration, and load balancing. These virtual network functions appear and behave like their physical counterparts without the need for dedicated hardware, using commodity servers instead.
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Integrating Advanced Connectivity into IT Infrastructure

CIOs can use these advanced connectivity building blocks alongside existing local area networking technologies like Ethernet and Wi-Fi, and wide-area capabilities such as Gigabit broadband and 4G LTE. This integration allows for configurable networks tailored to fit a variety of enterprise needs. With SDN and NFV, enterprises can spin up, tear down, and optimize network capabilities on demand to fit specific application or end-user requirements.

Addressing Demand and Supply Factors

As you develop your connectivity strategy, consider the following factors:

  • Real-Time Computation and Low Latency: Applications such as industrial automation, virtual reality, and autonomous decision-making require high computation capabilities with very low latency. Edge computing, where data processing occurs close to the end device, can meet these needs by reducing network backhaul traffic to central repositories.
  • Proliferation of Connected Devices: Enabled by 5G, the volume and variety of connected devices within an enterprise are expected to dramatically increase. CIOs and IT teams will need to address new end-point security requirements and challenges, such as preventing unauthorized devices on the network and managing security policies at the device level.
  • Evolving IT Talent Models: As IT talent upskills and retrains to address new connectivity demands, expertise in SDN and NFV will become essential. Enterprise architects will need to manage the partitioning of applications between the edge and the cloud or data centers, ensuring efficient and secure data transport.

Conclusion: Building Your Connectivity of Tomorrow

Advanced networking is poised to become a critical component of enterprise digital transformation. By leveraging technologies like 5G, low Earth orbit satellites, SDN, and NFV, companies can build flexible, secure, and high-performance networks that meet the demands of modern business. As you develop your connectivity strategy, consider how these advanced connectivity building blocks can enhance your digital capabilities, improve efficiency, and drive innovation in your organization.