Furthermore, he said the cost of SDN and the uncertainty as to the benefits it would deliver had dampened demand, but he predicted a change to be imminent. "Cost of SDN is coming down and acceptance is coming up. I think this year we will get some stronger adoption of SDN."
Also driving this, he said, was a growing realisation that digital transformation and disruptive initiatives were all dependent on the network and its capabilities.
"The conversations I have with customers come down to three broad areas: they are trying to change the user experience; they are trying to create greater agility and efficiency, better return on investment; and they are trying to change their business models to create an environment where they can use technology to respond to disruptors, or become a disruptor. And often when you have that conversation with the C-suite it is not always front of mind that the network is the enabler of all those things."
"Businesses have been sweating their network assets, seeing them as non-critical," O'Donohoe said. "As long as connectivity wasn't impacted they have not considered the network. Now there is a realisation that the network is the enabler of all their digital strategies."
O'Donohoe said the report was a useful tool to help organisations achieve this realisation and assess their network investment strategies. "It is a great to show customers what is happening at a global level and to ask them where they are at on their journey. Have they considered whether their network is evolving at a pace that will take them where they want to go?"
Dimension Data compiles the report based on network information gathered from 320 technology lifecycle management assessments conducted for clients around the world, covering 97,000 devices. This is supplemented by data from its global network service centres that manage over 1.5 million devices.
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