From refrigerators and trash receptacles to assembly line components like robots, anything and everything is now communicating through the Internet. The Internet of Things (IoT) creates a high volume of demand on web connectivity, and software-defined WAN (SD-WAN) is the key to supporting it all.
Since the early ages of the Internet, users have been the common end point. As business models have evolved and so many unusual objects have become Smart, devices are now the new common end point. As device connections approach the billions and trillions, cities and companies must look at their Internet infrastructure from sensors and gateways to the cloud. A hybrid of Internet services consisting of both public and private connections will need to be used to support IoT devices. SD-WAN will aid in managing the complexity of this hybridized network in an automated way.
The IoT must leverage both the LAN and WAN of an enterprise, and both sides must be strong and dependable. From wired and wireless local network connections to the larger world of WAN devices, each must be able to flawlessly communicate. Private networks become unrealistic when considering the vastness of the IoT device population, giving SD-WAN the perfect opportunity to save the day.
Complicated redundancies, efficient routing of traffic, and overcoming faulty connections are much more manageable through software automation. This means more reliable connectivity as the strengths of software and hardware are united. Using multiple WAN links helps the system find an alternate route if the original suffers a blip at any point. Everything from hardware to access management can be controlled from the cloud.
It’s easy to imagine the technical nightmare that would exist if each IoT device had to be managed separately. Thankfully, software-defined technologies like SD-WAN have come along. Hardware is now expected to function through the cloud and be managed via centrally operated software tools. Only through such simplification of hardware could the IoT have become such a phenomenon.
Simplicity should be the mindset when configuring Internet services for mass numbers of devices. SD-WAN applies simplicity at a network level to provide reliable and cost-effective connectivity, even for enormous networks. The use of virtualization hooks IoT sensors with entry routes and gateways to eliminate the need to constantly reconfigure the system each time a device or service is added.
The IoT is a technological marvel, but it requires a powerful support solution from device sensor to gateway and beyond. SD-WAN is that solution.