Digital Transformation with SD-WAN
In this webinar, learn:
- What it is & the benefits of SD-WAN
- How it can help your enterprise’s digital transformation
- How SD-WAN is changing the future
9+ years of progressive, broad experience in Networking, Cloud Computing, Network Management and Software Industry with varying roles in Product Management, People Management, Project Leadership and Software Development.
Digital Transformation with SD-WAN
[Start of recorded material 00:00:00]
Manan: Good morning, good afternoon and good evening. I know there’s a lot of folks joining from all across the globe. First of all, thank you for joining this webinar. And we’re going to cover digital transformation for the enterprise and how SD-WAN plays a role in that. My name is [Manan Shah]. I’m director of product management at Cisco. Just a few housekeeping notes – the slides that I’m using are attached in the resources section along with a few additional links, so please visit the attachment and links section and you’ll be able to download all of the content that’s related to today’s webinar. Also, this webinar is recorder, and the recording will be sent out shortly after. And we will be answering questions at the end of the webinar, so please feel free to ask any questions that you might have in the chat window. With that, let’s get started.
I wanted to start with digital transformation and what that means. Every CIO in every large organization is trying to transform the company, leveraging digital technology in all aspects of their business. And what that really means is how, as a CIO, I transform the company to provide better end-to-end experiences to our customers, partners, as well as internal stakeholders. And that’s becoming a big key differentiator on how companies are transforming that; not just the business, but the entire industries. To give you a couple of examples of how Uber has transformed auto industry, and now Uber has bigger valuation compared to some of the industry [reference] from the auto industry. Similarly, Airbnb has really transformed hotel industry and a large evaluation than most of the other companies in its industry.
So the whole focus of this digital transformation is how do I innovate and create new experiences in how people live, work and plan their life? I want to focus on the enterprise segment today, and I want to cover three different [verticals] and how digital transformation in the [newer use cases] are being adopted and why it is critically important for customers to look at digital transformation and how do they achieve that. So let’s talk about the healthcare industry. There is a lot of effort put in place to enable newer business models around telemedicine, around remote care. We are working with a healthcare provider who wants to provide this end-to-end care from the minute the patient comes to the hospital, goes through a surgery, recovers and then goes to home and is being monitored at home in terms of the medication, how much medication [are going], are the vital signs okay.
And that entire workflow from the minute the patient comes into the hospital, all the way until the patient is fully cured is enabled using a variety of different technologies. And that is how healthcare providers are essentially transforming the entire healthcare industry. Another example is around variable technologies. So a lot of healthcare providers are trialing a variety of different technologies, and they want to leverage that to monitor critical patient information. The other thing that – when we were talking to one of the healthcare providers, this was a rehab center – they have a whole bunch of rehab centers. All of the requirements was to monitor the chemicals, components and chemical composition in the water in the swimming pools that they offer to the patients as part of therapy. That was a new law that was passed. And in order to do that, they had equipment from a third-party vendor that had to be allowed into the facilities and be monitored.
And that equipment would send information into the cloud in terms of how the details of the chemical composition are and if everything’s working fine. Now, there a lot of HIPAA compliance laws and how the patient data is treated, so a very important networking requirement was how do you segment a data that is provided by the [center] to a third-party vendor to the patient data. And so segmentation and security becomes of utmost importance; but again these are some of the new use cases that healthcare providers have been through and enable on the network in terms of how they leverage digital technology. The last one that I want to talk about on the healthcare side is something what we call Analytics-based Medicine. So there’s a lot of effort being placed in terms of leveraging the data that is out there.
A lot of providers have access to a lot of data, but they cannot readily access that. [The outlook] research, what this particular patient is suffering or the symptoms are compared to a whole set of data points that they have out there, on their network. Also, there’s a lot of effort being placed to leverage machine learning and deep learning, to leverage those kind of technologies to automatically analyze and help the doctors to decide what is going on with a patient in addition to what their expertise brings to the table. So there’s a lot of different ways healthcare providers are thinking about enhancing the patient experience, as well as providing end-to-end care and reliable, sustainable service to their customers. Let’s move on to the next vertical – retail.
Retail, we all know, is under tremendous pressure from online retailers, as well as a variety of different pressures that they’re getting. If you look at any major retailer, the traditional retailers – their revenues have gone down, their market values have gone down. So the focus is how do they leverage technology to provide a better experience to the consumers who come and shot in the malls or in the traditional retails locations? A few examples here that we have seen customers deploy around digital transformation is – one of them is called digital signage. So, if you go to a mall today or about five years back, all the signage and everything was pretty plain and standard and they wouldn’t change it for months at a time.
A lot of advanced retailers are moving to a digital signage where they can cater to their audience based on time of the day, day of the week, depending on what kind of customers are coming to the store. A lot of effort has been placed in the digital signage. The second one is around location-sensitive recommendation. So, as I move through a large retail store and to the front section, they have their own applications, mobile applications through which they can provide either recommendations based on who the user is. They can also provide what they’ve bought in the past and hence what they’re likely to buy. So they do a lot of advance analytics in the background and provide very context-sensitive, location-sensitive recommendations to the customers to enhance their buying experience.
What we are seeing lately is around digital mirrors and the ability for a consumer to try out a variety of different colors of garment if they want to buy a garment at a retail store. Or if they are looking at a furniture shop, they want to essentially provide the ability to the digitalization capability that I can visualize how this furniture would look in different colors, how the furniture would look in different backgrounds. So, if I go to a store to buy furniture, I can set up the furniture manner, identical to how my home looks like or how the size of the room or the color of the wall looks like and see how the furniture would look if I were to buy that. So, again, a lot of enhancements in terms of digitalization of a store and how you provide that experience to the consumer so that the [stickiness] created is a very important – there’s a lot of importance. And all the CIOs and execs are looking at transforming their business leveraging that.
The third one is around financials. So if you look at the retail bank for example, the number of customers that go to a retail bank over the last few years have actually gone down because a lot of capabilities are built-in into mobile phone applications and a lot of digital transactions are happening in the industry. If I were to pay a friend of mine, I could get you the [PayPal], to pay directly, or all of my utility bills are paid using [Bill B], all of my check deposits are done using a mobile app on my phone these days. So the challenge is always that when a customer comes to a financial bank and how do you provide that service that creates the stickiness and you offer multiple dynamic services to that?
A lot of banks are trying out what they call virtual teller to optimize on the number of tellers that are available at any given point in any retail locations. A lot of financial firms are trying out what they call the video-based advisors, where they have tellers that can do all of the regular, day-to-day business; but if you want advanced service, you can go to a video-based advisor. That person is sitting somewhere remotely, but they can provide you advice at the time, on the topic that is of importance to you. Again, providing the seamless use experience. Now, a few other things that retail banks are doing is around targeted advertising and providing the relevance for what you want to do, when you want to when you go into a branch.
So if I go into a branch, maybe withdrawing some cash or doing some regular, day-to-day stuff; but if I have a video-based advisor that can give me guidance on investment or that can give me guidance on my mortgage, and that’s additional services they can offer when the consumer is already there, irrespectively of whether you have that specialist in the retail branch or not using the video-based advisors. So, these are some of the use cases that we have seen and we have helped customers deploy a digitally-transformed enterprise and actually enable these use cases. Moving on to what does that mean from a Wide Area Network, or how does networking really play a role in helping enterprises transform their business?
So, if you look at some of the statistics – again, 80 percent of the organizations are moving to public cloud. What does that mean? If you want to provide a seamless experience, you can no longer take all of your traffic from the branch, take it to your data center and then take it to the cloud. That creates a thrombosing effect and essentially a bad user experience. It used to be that we all had desktops and laptops at our branch locations, but now we see more and more mobile connected devices in the network. And when customers come in, they expect this Wi-Fi to be there; they expect all kinds of devices like mobile device, a tablet, a laptop – all kinds of devices are showing up. And in fact, the statistics show that it’s going to be 10 billion mobile connected devices by 2019.
This puts a lot of pressure on the bandwidth needs of the network and how your Wide Area Network is built. Now, in order to for all the use cases that we talked about, if you were to enable that – and you will need a lot more bandwidth than what you have at the enterprise or at the branch locations today. So, think about the bandwidth requirements – if I want to put video surveillance, if I want to put a digital signage, if I want to put digital screens in my store, if I want to provide location-sensitive information, customer-sensitive information – this requires a lot of additional bandwidth in the branch. Now, more retail organization or more – any enterprise IT organization, if you talk to them, their budgets are at best flat.
If you were to keep your budgets flat, if you were to increase your bandwidth requirements by 50 percent, how do you build a next generation network that would meet those needs? How would the financial model look like? How would you provide optimal user experience? And that is where SD-WAN comes and plays a big role in helping you achieve that. And we will go through that in the next few slides on how does that happen. Another [later] point is around 30 billion IoT devices by 2020. That’s a huge number. If you look at the number of IoT devices today, it’s minuscule compared to the 30 billion number that we are talking about. If 30 billion of devices on the network are going to push lots and lots of center sends data to the network, how would network hold up? How much bandwidth would I need? Where would I base this data?
Would I take it to the cloud? Would I take it to my data center? How do I process so much amount of data? Those are all the questions that enterprise IT has answered today and in order to build infrastructure for tomorrow. Let’s look at a few more data points, more application. We all know the number of applications that we have on our mobile phone. We all know the number of applications that we have on our tablets. That number of applications is increasing day by day, minute by minute. And just on my phone, I downloaded five new applications yesterday. And that’s the kind of model that we’re going towards that is there’s an application for anything and everything, and I need to be able to consume it whenever I want, I need to be able to use the application whenever I need and do such and do a whole bunch of things.
So that, again, creates a lot of bandwidth challenges on the network. Again, applications are expecting the bandwidth requirements to increase about 20 to 50 percent. We talked about more devices, a lot more users. If you look at the statistics – 80 percent more users [app] that we are going to see at the branch locations. And with all these new devices, more bandwidth, more application, what remains a standard is the security challenges. With more devices and more application, you naturally have to think about, “How do you secure the network?” Going back to my healthcare example – if I have a sensor, how do I isolate that sensor sending data to a partner cloud from my HIPAA-compliant data? Or how do I do digital signage in retail and separate that out from my [PCA] topic so that, no matter what happens, my PCA topics is protected from the digital signage or any other topic that’s going in my branch network.
So, security is extremely important. In this day and age, there are more attacks happening day by day, there’s more [ransom] happening day by day. How do you protect your network around it, and how do you build so that your solution is solid and your network can withstand those capabilities? The last thing that I do want to leave you folks with is dealing with a lot of online marketing, online consumption. 90 percent of the revenue is generated in the branch. So, that tells you that the branch topic is extremely important and you need to build a robust solution and deploy a robust network in order to sustain that as we grow to these numbers. So, the next thing that I’m going to talk about is – if you assume that the transformation is [mandatory], if we assume that we need to enhance our network, enhance our IT infrastructure, what are the fundamental building blocks and what are the foundation pillars that I need to build my IT infrastructure around?
And you have to think through that in a very careful manner. So, in the past, everything was pretty much hardware centric. In this day and age, when you need those dynamic nature of your infrastructure, you need to make sure it is software-driven – so you can shrink and expand whenever you want and you can do whatever you want. A lot of efforts – how do we automate? We have some customers who wanted to create an isolated segment on the network of 1000 branches. And with the SD-WAN solution they were able to achieve that in half an hour. So when their business group came and asked them, “Did I want to roll this new service? But this new service has to be completely isolated from all the other services that we offer at the bank. And by the way, I want this new service rolled out in the next 30 days in my 1000 branches.” The IT has to be able to adapt at the speed of business, and that is a must requirement. Some of our consumers are able to do that in a span of 30 minutes.
Again, you have to leverage software-defined capabilities. You have to be able to automate things in order to do that. And the third piece that goes along with that is programmability. You can no longer have closed systems. You need to be able to – whoever you buy the infrastructure from has to be programmable, and you have to build the [unintelligible 00:21:25] capabilities in your IT organization in order to leverage those APIs and program to those APIs. The next two are very important. The next two aspects are around analyzing, getting the right visibility, and then doing some particular analysis to figure out what would happen, what would your load be and how do you adjust to that. Just having automation, programmability and being software-driven is not good enough because if you do not see what’s happening, if you cannot predict what’s going to happen, then you cannot leverage programmability, automation and software-driven capabilities.
You have to be very much aligned with what the expectations are going to be in the future. And the last one, again, I talked about the business intent and ability to roll the service and run as the speed of business is extremely important. So these are [a sum of the five] fundamental pillars around which you are to think about your network transformation that helps you do a digitization of your enterprise. A few other things that I would mention are – cloud [works is on prep]. This is a key area to focus on them, we constantly – our customers moving their applications outside of the data center to either consume it as a fast service or build, move their applications to our infrastructure service cloud like Amazon [app developers] or Microsoft. So that’s a key decision, and that actually has a lot of impact on how the network has to be configured, how the network has to be designed and how the topic patterns will change.
For example, if I’m moving 70 percent of my applications to a fast cloud or being consumed as – or being delivered from a public cloud, why do I need to take all of my plans [roughly] to the data center? That becomes no longer a requirement, which was a must have about 10 years back, when all of the applications were in the data center. Automation and scale – how do I bring up a new site in a span of minutes or in a span of hours as opposed to waiting for 60 to 90 days? Security and compliance – I talked about segmenting the top different types of traffic, but – and there is a whole notion of a thin branch versus a thick branch and how do I mitigate against the threats that are coming into the network. So there’s various areas of focus or evaluations that you need to do. And last one is around assurance and analytics is – knowing what is happening in your network, getting the right amount of visibility, doing some predictive analytics on that, and then planning for the growth when you would have that based on what the analytics are saying.
So these are some of the foundation pillars that you absolutely need in order to build a next generation network and transform your company for this digitization. So, I want to bring this home in terms of how SD-WAN and how the Viptela can help customers on this digitization journey. So what Viptela has done is built this [overly] fabric that we can help variety of different users, devices and IoT things or sensors connecting into this network or connecting into this fabric. It is less important what type of end-device is connecting as long as you provide the right experience, and the fabric has to have security built-in, it has to have [scalability] built-in, it has to be open. I talk about how important it is to leverage the APIs and be programmatic about the fabric.
And then you need to be able to provide connectivity to any user from any device or any sensor, be able to connect to applications no matter where they are residing, irrespectively of whether the applications are residing in a data center, in a public cloud, in a managed private cloud or consumed as a fast service. The network has to provide seamless, efficient connectivity to these applications. One of the key things is – as enterprises move their applications to consume it as a fast service, they are thinking about the same for the network. Why would I want to deploy everything on frame from a control plane and management plane perspective when I can consume that as a service? So cloud-delivered networks is something that almost every enterprises are looking at.
And if I go back and look at our customer base, we have some of the largest Fortune 500 companies deploying Viptela Cisco SD-WAN. And if you look at the numbers, 95 percent of our customers are actually hosted in the Viptela cloud. And that shows you the transition that is happening in the network and how customers are comfortable with consuming even the network elements as a service. Of course, you would need physical or virtual components at a branch location, but all of the controlled plane and management plane can reside in the cloud. And analytics, again – a layer on top of that is to get the right amount of visibility from the right branches at the right time, getting some forecasting done to identify, in the next three months, which are the sites and which are [the circuits] that are going to run out of bandwidth, and how do I handle that?
And so that is critically important. So I will just leave you a couple of key points in terms of how the SD-WAN solution looks like. So there are four layers of the solution. I think we have covered this in some other plan prior webinars, but I’ll cover it again. So there is a data plane component that essentially could fit at the data center, a campus, a branch or a home office. It could be a physical or a virtual component. All of the intelligence is in the fabric, and that’s what this forms the controlled plane that resides in the cloud. It can be consumed as a service. And then management plane is what gives you the eyes and ears into the solution to manage the entire network from a single [pane of glass]. And there is an orchestration plane through which the whole solution is enabled. Again, these four layers of the solution provide you distinct capabilities of each layer and give you a lot of flexibility in terms of how they are deployed and how they are consumed.
In terms of a little bit more technical details around the solutions, we have the foundation is zero trust and zero tax model. So what that means is customers can leverage any type of connectivity, whether it’s MPLS, whether it’s cellular, whether it’s broadband and built this fabric that is transport-agnostic, provider-agnostic and has full capabilities in terms of security and segmentation so that it goes through the full authentication and authorization before a single packet goes on the wire. So you can be assured that your application or users would have secure connectivity to the applications, no matter where they reside. And then on top of that is what we call Services Delivery Platform, where you have capabilities like [full routing stack], full security and segmentation capabilities so you can peel off any traffic into its own segment and make sure that that’s isolated from everything else.
QoS, multicast are key features that a lot of system have used, and we provide a global solution around that. The one thing that I’d want to focus on is survivability and service-insertion capability. So, this is again stitching analytics into the network; so based on the analytics and based on open IP address can integrate with any security solution and leverage the service insertion capability so that if you detect a rogue device or if you detect a rogue user, you can automate the whole workflow for that. That particular user’s traffic is taken to a firewall, done at an amount of inspections before it goes to its destination. And to make that very simple, programmable is extremely important in today’s day and age. And on top of that what we have is Application Policies. So, you no longer want to stich [them to a path] where – how the user connects to the application.
You want to set the right SLAs and let the system figure out what is the right path for the right application, for the right user. So I can say that my voice application requires [unintelligible 00:31:41], and I will let the system figure out how it takes the voice traffic, though which path it takes, whether it’s broadband, whether it’s [LTE], whether it’s MPLS – I don’t care because all of the paths are equally secure, they are equally available. As long as they meet my SLA, it can take any path that’s available to that. So that should be the focus from a business and from an intent perspective is you provide your intent on what your SLA and let the solution figure out what path it takes. The second piece is around per-segment topologies. So, this is about building different topologies for different use cases.
If I have a PCI traffic, I want to make sure it goes to my data center and then nowhere else. So I would build [unintelligible 00:32:34] topology for my PCI traffic; and then for my voice traffic I may have a [full-mix] topology. I want voice to go directly from a branch to a branch. Or for a [media surveilled]. Let’s say I’m a retailer with four-five different brands, and I have three or four stores in any mall. I may want to share a video feed between different stores so that, if there is theft happening at one of the stores, the other stores know about it. I don’t need to provide that feed to any other location, like a location across the country, in a different mall, because the relevance is not there. So you can build different topologies for different segments and essentially take the applications to where they need to go.
And a few other capabilities that we have in the solution are around optimizing for cloud access. I talked about a significant trend about applications moving outside of the data center and going into either a fast cloud or a iOS cloud. So, providing the appropriate, right amount of access and building the capability into those public clouds for efficient access is extremely important. All of these have to happen with the right amount of operational simplicity, with the right amount of monitoring and seeing where the data is going, how the data is going to the network and analytics on top of that. And that is what will tell us SD-WAN solution provides today.
I’ll give you a couple of examples on how some of our customers have digitized their network and built a network for the next generation infrastructure application. This is an example from one of our customers who has built 100 plus sites, small enterprise deployment, where – if you look at the network, they actually had dual MPLS, where one MPLS [unintelligible 00:34:47] in the network, and they transform the network to keep the – get rid of one of the MPLS and share more towards MPLS in a broadband model. And in some cases they even leverage LTE. So, at the branch locations, they had either one of the MPLS from either AT&T or Sprint, and then they had broadband circuits.
At the data centers, they kept the two MPLS so that they can have full [hubs] for connectivity and add a few more broadband sites. They were able to monitor everything centrally, they were able to provision everything centrally. They were also able to do something what we call zero-touch deployment to really speed up the force in terms of how fast they can deploy new branches into the network. And this is how they were able to build the capabilities into the network and move towards a next generation network. The next example that I want to give is a little bit more involved – this was 1500-site retailer network. What they did is they actually had dual MPLS, again. In this particular case they actually moved to complete broadband and LTE network; they got rid of MPLS. So we see a combination of different customers doing different things.
In this particular case they actually built a single overlay network with essentially all of their field offices, as well as all of their store location. At the field location they had multiple broadband circuits. At their store locations they had predominantly single broadband and LTE network. And what they did at those locations is they connected to multiple data centers, with some connecting to America’s Data Center as a primary data center and maybe Europe as a secondary data center. And the Euro stores would connect to Euro data centers as primary, and either Asia or U.S. data centers as secondary. So you have full flexibility in terms of how you connect, how you operate multiple data centers. And this gives you a lot of benefits and a significant ROI in terms of how you deploy.
The customer saved $20 million over five years by deploying to an SD-WAN network based on Viptela technology. Moving forward – this is my last slide. I do want to be sensitive of the time, but I do want to answer one question that comes very often. Viptela, as most of you folks would know, recently got acquired by Cisco, and the acquisition closed at the end of July. So Viptela is now part of Cisco, starting 1st of August. So, the question in a lot of customer’s minds are – if I deploy Viptela now, what is going to happen and how things are going to change, and would Cisco still continue offering Viptela solution and things of that nature. So I want to be upfront and provide that kind of details. A thing, what I mentioned in the past few minutes is that all of the intelligence is in the fabric and it’s cloud-delivered and cloud-managed in all of that solution remains the same.
The solution is now called Cisco SD-WAN. And [VG] Router, which is the router or the element that sets in the branches, data centers, home offices and other locations are all connecting to this intelligent fabric. So today we have [unintelligible 00:38:59] router that’s connecting into this fabric. In the next nine to 12 months, we will have all of Cisco’s infrastructure – the ISR, the ASR, the EMCS Platform, as well as the CSR, the virtual platform, all connecting as different end-points into this fabric. So, again, all of the intelligence that we have built in the fabric remains in the fabric, everything is cloud-managed, but customers would have a lot of flexibility in terms of the end-node that’s connecting to the fabric. And last but not the least is the management integration where we manage, continues to exist, but it will integrate into what Cisco recently launched DNA Center.
That’s the product that can provide [inter-based] networking and the policy deployments across wireless, software-defined access, as well as SD-WAN deployment. So that’s the broader roadmap and how Viptela and Cisco are going to integrate together. So that is what I wanted to cover. Again, I really thank you for the time. And I see a lot of people asking a lot of questions, so let me answer a few questions. One of the questions was – how would Viptela extend your segmentation and security to the application inside of the cloud such as data [bulletin] as you’re using zero-trust security? That’s a very good question. So what we do is we have full automation built into our vManage, which is a management plane component through which you can build something called a transit VPC into, inside of the AWS. This transit VPC has virtual router from Viptela, and they form secure connectivity to the application VPCs.
And that is how you build end-to-end secure connectivity, leveraging the zero-trust model that we have. And the other advantage that you get is you get a homogenous deployment model; so as you go from AWS to Azure, to Google Cloud or any other cloud for that matter, you have a homogenous deployment model and you can stretch the segmentation all the way to the application. So, if I am deploying three applications in AWS, two finance applications, one HR application, I can [cut] the segmentation in the AWS, in the transit VPC and carry it all the way to my branch.
The next question was – are you going to demonstrate the solution? We have a lot of demos available and we have done webinars in the past. We do plan to do webinars in the future where we demo some of these capabilities, so stayed tuned for that. The next question was – where do the cost savings comes from? Bandwidth and carrier costs or getting rid of ISRs or physical routers and maintenance and having lower cost edge devices and subscription services? So, if you look at all of the Cisco’s press releases around the acquisition of Viptela, there are two things that stood out. One was Cisco was acquiring Viptela for the cloud-first model, where everything can be delivered through the cloud and networks can be extended into the cloud; and the second thing was a subscription model. So, absolutely, Cisco is trying to move all of its business to the subscription model, but that doesn’t mean getting rid of physical routers or ISRs.
We have almost 80 to 90 percent of our customers on the Viptela cloud and in the subscription model, as well on the physical – leveraging physical routers. So there’s a lot of different ways you can get cost benefits. There’s an ROI calculator on our website that you can leverage, and you can reach out to us and we can provide you more information on how you can get cost benefits out of this deployment. One more question that I’m going to talk about – will there be any impact in our services when deploying Viptela? So, again, we have – as a standalone company, Viptela had [reports] of 200 to over 250 customer deployment; some of them in large enterprises. And we have been able to successfully migrate without any interruption to the services or the applications that our users are consuming, and we’ll definitely be able to help you with that.
I know there’s a lot more questions, and we will answer those questions over e-mail. So every single question will be answered, but I do want to take this opportunity to thank everyone for joining this webinar; and we’ll send you the recording, as well as the answers to the questions. Thank you.
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