Exciting times ahead for SDN market, says IDC

by CXOtoday News Desk    May 10, 2013

SDN market

The enterprise networking market will reach $42.4 billion by 2013 and is likely to exceed $50 billion, with growth across all categories, by 2017, according to research firm IDC. Rohit Mehra, vice president of network infrastructure at IDC said at a recent networking summit that One of the most exciting categories to emerge in recent years is the Software Defined Networking (SDN) space. IDC forecasts that by 2016, the in-use SDN marketplace will generate $3.7 billion in revenue.

At present, the Layer 2-3 switch market is pegged at 46.9 per cent and Layer 4-7 devices, including application delivery controllers, is also witnessing a robust growth. But Mehra is optimistic about the pace of WLAN growth as he states that the WLAN revenues grew by 28 per cent in quarter by quarter over the last three years.

Of the various components of SDN, IDC predicts SDN-related network infrastructure will represent 58 percent of revenues. The control layer piece will bring in 8.7 percent, while networking services and applications will account for 18 percent. The remaining part of the revenues will most likely come from professional services. This does not include the silicon space.

“We have been counting boxes for the last few decades. We as an industry are at the instantiation of a new era, where revenues come from software,” said Mehra to Enterprise Networking Planets while discussing the growth of the enterprise networking market.

IDC analyst believe that increased network scale and mobility is driving the need for SDN, which is enabling a faster, simpler way to manage networks in an automated manner. From an enterprise point of view, it is about the network providing more responsiveness to the applications. Therefore according to IDC, “SDN is not a product or an endpoint. It’s an architectural approach.

While some believe that SDN will lead to network commoditization, IDC analysts disagree with it because they believe that the supply chain for SDN is still emerging and will take a while to reach maturity. Nevertheless, it is emerging as a powerful technology in the coming days.