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If Latency is Currency, Tunnel-Based SD-WAN is REALLY Expensive

By Tim Ziemer
November 19, 2019

Microsoft Ignite and the AT&T Business Summit were this past week. At both shows, I noticed there was a great deal of attention shown to network latency. It’s even been recently called the “Currency of the Cloud”. On top of that, Mo Katibeth at AT&T recently called “Latency the ‘Tipping Point’ for 5G”.

This focus on latency flies directly in the face of carriers and enterprises rolling out IPSec and VxLAN as the foundation of their SD-WAN and many public cloud interconnects. But with these roll outs, they are paying a heavy tax in latency and overhead. Everyone can agree that digital transformation is about a good experience, and that experience depends on low latency. So carriers and enterprises need options that can help them provide excellent user experiences, while also keeping down the network latency costs.

As the CTO of 128Technology, Don Troshynski, says, “the dirty little secret of tunnel-based SD- WAN is you are submitting yourself to an additional bandwidth and latency tax.” In fact, in many cases it can be up to 40%. I don’t care how much latency budget or bandwidth you have in your network, that is a lot of overhead.

There is a better way. Secure Vector Routing in the 128T Networking Platform allows for session-based virtual routing and provides all the benefits needed for digital transformation — without the overhead and complexity of tunnels. Below is a before and after chart of a customer using a leading tunnel-based SD-WAN vendor, then switching to the 128T Networking Platform by 128 Technology. You can clearly see a drop in latency when the 128T Networking Platform is implemented in the existing network (view image below).

Another large retail customer of 128 Technology saw a reduction in bandwidth usage and network congestion across thousands of locations. They saved half a gigabyte in network utilization per day, per remote location by eliminating the SD-WAN tunnels. Across the chain, the elimination of tunnels saved terabits of network overhead and congestion per day.

Public cloud charges are based on bandwidth, and we can all agree “latency is the new currency”. Provide better digital experiences with 128 Technology and reduce bandwidth by up to 40%.

Watch Video: Session Smart Routing – Real Results to learn more about how the 128T Networking Platform can improve your network.