CenturyLink Recognized as Software-Defined Solutions and Services Leader
CenturyLink has been recognized as a leader in the just-released Network: Software-Defined Solutions and Services 2019 Global Report. The report, published by ISG Provider Lens™, delivers leading-edge and actionable research focused on technology and service providers’ strengths, and how they are positioned relative to their peers in the larger market. This report takes a deep dive into software-defined technologies and how they’re helping enterprises navigate challenges associated with building adaptive networks.
Adaptive networking can be defined as “the ability for enterprises to procure bandwidth (across hybrid WAN services) and related network functions in an on-demand manner, and centrally define, configure and manage network policy administration.” Enterprises are increasingly making strategic investments in this critical area to improve their customer satisfaction while boosting sales, increasing flexibility and agility, managing costs and increasing efficiency. Here’s a closer look at CenturyLink’s ratings and how these insights can help shape your software-defined technologies investment strategy.
Leader in Managed WAN Services
The report’s authors explain that Managed WAN Services (MWS) cover the features and functionality that “carriers offer in their WAN and at the customer point of demarcation. They are a collection of value-added services (VAS) that offer monitoring and reporting, security and outsourced customer-premises equipment (CPE) functions.” In a landscape where CIOs and their teams are under increasing pressure to deliver more capacity supporting a rapidly expanding number of devices, applications and solutions — often without additional budget or headcount — an MWS partner offers the ability to outsource core functions, along with access to consulting services to design, deploy and manage network services. The most basic MWS programs monitor networks and offer alerts in case of an outage. Moving into the higher tiers of service introduces predictive monitoring, on-the-ground troubleshooting solutions and overall lifecycle management. Enterprises also leverage these services for accessing solutions such as network operation centers (NOCs), disaster recovery and customer portals.
According to the report, “CenturyLink has been ranked consistently as one of the top-performing managed WAN companies globally. It has a string of acquired companies such as Qwest, Time Warner Telecom, Global Crossing and Level 3. In the past year, the company has made various announcements on ethernet, ethernet-LAN, SD-WAN, wavelengths, security services, unified communications and collaborations (UCC) services VPN, VoIP and other internet applications, including access extensions. It has a wide infrastructure network in more than 60 countries, served by a staff of 47,000, along with an extensive partner network.” Three specific strengths were called out that contributed to our Leader status: network management tools, IT and data center management offerings, and our client and end-customer-centric solutions.
Leader in Software-Defined Network Technologies (Mobile to Edge)
Software-Defined Network (SDN) technologies intersect with business trends that bring an increasing number of devices, workflows and compute processes to the Edge. Mobile to Edge suppliers enable improvements in an enterprise’s network agility and automation. In addition, they can help reduce the cost of network operations compared to traditional deployments. While Edge use cases vary, enterprises may need them because of applications and devices that require low latency or the deployment/provisioning of IT equipment or functionality to remote or unmanned locations.
As enterprises work with SDN technology providers, it’s important to choose a partner that will enable the stable, reliable delivery of mobile to Edge capabilities. The report’s authors note that “CenturyLink has been ranked consistently as one of the most dynamic and delivery-oriented WAN and SD-WAN companies with an impressive portfolio of its own assets. It has recently made various announcements on Ethernet, LAN, SD-WAN, uCPE, internet applications, including access extensions and management that are highly relevant to edge. CenturyLink offers adaptive networking solutions, SD-WAN as a service, and application and performance-aware routing with full flexibility in appliance deployments based on uCPE. The company can host multiple virtual network functions (VNF) with a virtual appliance that can consolidate multiple functions on a single device, thus bringing immense operational and cost efficiencies to the enterprise WAN edge.”
Leader in SDN Transformation Services (Consulting and Implementation)
Having an adaptive network is a crucial component of a long-term digital business and transformation strategy. As part of their report, ISG Provider Lens™ assessed which providers are currently offering SDN Transformation Services. Enterprises undertaking significant SDN initiatives often rely on partners for discovery, assessment, design, deployment and lifecycle management.
CenturyLink has been recognized as a Category Leader, with an extensive portfolio, robust infrastructure, vast partner ecosystem and competent consulting unit. The report notes that “CenturyLink has been ranked consistently as one of the top-performing networking companies globally. Its 2019 organization format, Adaptive Networking and IT Solutions, has an impressive new lineup of fully supported products and services that cover networking, hybrid cloud and IT solutions, security, voice and unified communications, managed services, and IT consulting business units. With an extensive combination of its own portfolio assets, recent portfolio announcements, own infrastructure network and partner network of products, infrastructure and services, CenturyLink has a solid set of offerings for clients.”
The report goes on to highlight that in addition to an extensive reach, scope and products and services menu, that our deep vertical expertise makes CenturyLink a Leading SDN Transformation Services partner for enterprises in a wide range of industries. As the authors write about our deep industry/vertical know-how, “CenturyLink has examples of numerous implementations and case studies of significant players from different industries such as manufacturing, precision engineering, food and beverage, and medical/recycling.”
A closer look at the key trends across the report reveals several important takeaways. The SDN space is evolving quickly. Enterprises are investing heavily in tools that automate management, use insights and analytics to predict and prevent security issues and partnerships to help them implement the right solutions for their needs. By strategically leveraging SDN solutions, IT leaders are laying the foundation for secure, agile and adaptive networks that can fuel the next generation of customer experiences and optimized business workflows in an efficient, cost-effective way.
Do you want to learn more about the ISG Provider Lens Report™, “Network – Software-Defined Solutions and Services, Global 2019?”
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