Heavy Reading: cable companies use SD-WAN to improve business services

Cable companies are looking to add software-defined wide area network (SD-WAN) to their services according to a report by research company Heavy Reading.

According to the report, SD-WAN enable cable providers to demonstrate that they can use their existing coaxial connections for Gigabit Internet speeds, not just fiber alone.

American cable companies such as Comcast, Charter Communications, Cox Communications and Mediacom Communications are already adopting DOCSIS 3.1 (D3.1) technology to deliver Gigabit-level speeds over existing hybrid fiber-coax (HFC) plant.

Heavy Reading analyst Craig Leddy said that SD-WAN is a way for cable providers to demonstrate the power of the cable distribution platform – both for fiber connections and for coax using D3.1. It gives cable a leading edge product to help solidify its SMB customer base and move up-market to serve enterprise businesses and key verticals where it already has made substantial progress.

Leddy added that competition would be fierce, among both service providers and technology suppliers. According to the analyst, the winners will be those that correctly map out the migration and develop the right mix of products for their business constituents.

Cable providers also are challenged to improve their customer support and SLAs, areas where business customers perceive the large telcos as being superior.

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