Security specialist Fortinet claims more than 21,000 organizations have chosen its software-defined wide-area networking (SD-WAN) solution. That’s news because Cisco Systems — the acknowledged leader in many networking/virtualization market niches — claimed only more than 20,000 SD-WAN solution customers in a Nov. 26 blog post.
With Cisco ranking No 1 in an SD-WAN equipment market share report published by Gartner around the same time, it’s clear that Fortinet is challenging Cisco and other market leaders for SD-WAN supremacy.
Fortinet is banking on its security expertise in this challenge, as its flagship SD-WAN offering is called Fortinet Secure SD-WAN.
“Fortinet delivers full-featured SD-WAN via the FortiGate next-generation firewall, and today Fortinet Secure SD-WAN has emerged as one of the top solutions on the market to support enterprises in their pursuit of reducing WAN complexity and cost while enhancing application experience and security,” the company said in a Dec. 17, 2019, statement. “To support large enterprises, Fortinet Secure SD-WAN is able to scale to up to 100,000 SD-WAN sites thanks to Fortinet’s 20-year investment in building single-pane-of-glass management, which can now support the most demanding use cases for both security and SD-WAN.”
Fortinet was just last month named a “challenger” (along with Cisco) in research firm Gartner Inc.’s latest Magic Quadrant report on WAN edge infrastructure, which featured VMware and Silver Peak in the “Leaders” section.
However, with Cisco being named a market leader (along with VMware, Silver Peak, and Nokia-Nuage) in a recent report by research firm IDC on the SD-WAN infrastructure market, it’s clear Fortinet still has some work to do to claim top honors among the industry’s major players.
The explosion in the SD-WAN space might leave plenty of room for the firm to maneuver.
“SD-WAN continues to be one of the fastest-growing segments of the network infrastructure market, driven by a variety of factors,” said Rohit Mehra, vice president, Network Infrastructure at IDC. “First, traditional enterprise WANs are increasingly not meeting the needs of today’s modern digital businesses, especially as it relates to supporting SaaS apps and multi- and hybrid-cloud usage. Second, enterprises are interested in easier management of multiple connection types across their WAN to improve application performance and end-user experience. Combined with the rapid embrace of SD-WAN by leading communications service providers globally, these trends continue to drive deployments of SD-WAN, providing enterprises with dynamic management of hybrid WAN connections and the ability to guarantee high levels of quality of service on a per-application basis.”