Not long ago, a fleet of static computers with a robust data center was the definition of bleeding-edge network systems. Then came the revolution of cloud computing, changing the entire networking landscape. The cloud made the connection between limitless computing devices feasible and provided access to various services or products effortlessly. With more connected devices coming up, cloud computing trends are bringing the winds of change to the networking space.
Cloud-enabled networks – The foundation of innovation
People sometimes consider networks as a utility similar to electricity, gas, or water. However, networks are not inherently stagnant, nor can they remain so. To meet constantly evolving customer expectations, an organization must re-engineer its networks to make them agile and competitive during data usage surges.
Just like we renovate homes or office spaces, organizations must focus on remodeling their networks with the latest technological advancements, to drive operational capabilities, develop new products or services, and fit into any industry.
With the advent of the cloud, networks are now more competent, stable, flexible, and secure than before. Cloud networking is the new pillar of flexible and scalable connectivity. Cloud technology powers other bleeding edge technologies like the Internet of Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI), Augmented Reality (AR), and Virtual Reality (VR) by being resilient and responsive, thus enabling the digital transformation of business. As with any other technology, cloud computing for business undergoes constant changes. Organizations must look out for cloud computing trends and act accordingly to stay ahead in the race.
Why prioritize overhauling your network?
The biggest network challenge that today’s organizations face is to meet the wide and rapidly changing set of needs of the employees, facilitate the seamless connectivity of data, and ensure access to platforms and applications remotely from any location.
The network must handle:
- Rapid and agile innovation powered by cloud adoption
- Connectivity between applications across cloud services and data hubs
- Communication between various devices
- Growing capabilities and integrations of data analytics
- Security for inbound and outbound communications
- Rapid and revolutionary changes in working behavior, particularly for remote jobs
Quick fixes might not be satisfactory. Organizations must follow the recent trends in cloud-enabled networks to reframe the network and prepare for the latest environment.
A rapidly changing network space
A storm of changes has hit the networking sector. Today, network evolution with the cloud must meet changing customer demands and provide seamless connectivity between data, applications, and platforms on demand. Here are the top trends that influence network evolution.
Compressed and continuous transformation of networks
During the past few years, we have witnessed digital transformation and trends in cloud-enabled networks shifting rapidly over the past few years. At the same time, the expectations of customers and their demands have changed tremendously. From the delivery of food and medicines to appliances, digital transformation has become a part of our daily lives.
Cloud-enabled networks must now perform better than ever, sending data faster with a shorter response time. Organizations must look for modern networks that deliver high compression, speedy, and bulk-data handling needs while transmitting responses in real-time.
Migration from hardware to software
The migration of the networks’ focus from hardware-centric to software-centric is creating ripples. You can run network software on commercial off-the-shelf (COTs) hardware. Though you might find various offerings and choices from network providers, you must determine your needs, find, integrate, and run them. The situation might seem chaotic and overwhelming, like a marketplace where vendors constantly shout out to you to look at their offerings. With some guidance, you will learn to opt for which service or offering suits you and your business best.
Meanwhile, migration leads to new services where you pay for what you use rather than buying costly equipment outright. The latest changes increase the speed, agility, and flexibility of working with a modern network.
Accelerating change with software-related networks
Traditional network systems consisted of tightly combined hardware, software, and other tools for support. With the use of software, more agile, flexible, and scalable solutions have taken over traditional network systems. As cloud computing infrastructure powers these software-based networks, they have had an exponential boost in features and functionalities, resulting in more reliable and intelligent networks.
Building tight security measures
Security is a top priority for any organization. Today’s enterprises are looking for a new and holistic approach to their network security. Network strategies and solutions must always be a part of their network infrastructure’s security framework, rather than being a separate, isolated entity or a set of tools. Companies must implement a never-trust, always verify, or zero-trust model policy for users, workloads, networks, and devices, creating a resilient network environment and reducing the risk of potential attackers. Adding an end-to-end zero-trust model to the network infrastructure and the security strategy adds more complexity and resilience.
Crafting modern-day networks with the cloud
Building a cloud-secure foundation
The first step in building a modern network with cloud architecture is constructing a solid and safe cloud foundation. The organization must design a cloud solution that handles complex traffic situations with rigorous security measures. For better integration purposes, the organizations must migrate the network servers from data centers to the cloud infrastructure. With the advent of 5G bandwidth, enterprises can make the mobility of devices in the organization hassle-free, eliminating the purpose of wired networks. As you create an easily configurable architecture, modern network systems can adapt when you add more cloud-native projects.
Welcoming hybrid/multi-cloud environments
Organizations should always prepare for hybrid or multi-cloud architecture, as no enterprise has all its workload on a single cloud. A business must understand the system and design the networking system to sync with hybrid or multi-cloud environments.
Rather than treating networks as a problem to solve and resolve on each cloud project, an organization must aim to provide networking flexibility, allowing for choices on how to meet unique needs on assignments like machine learning projects or data analysis. The enterprise can manage its networking across multiple clouds.
Bring in automation
Gone are the days when networks were static, with routers and switches being the vital components. Organizations used to hire engineers to manage all the physical hardware present in their office spaces. With the emergence of cloud infrastructure, the traditional system holds no value. The cloud service handles a heavy workload, which often means that a sudden burst of activity in a short period is impossible to manage manually.
Adding an automated programmable network layer to the infrastructure and enterprise tools is the current cloud computing trend, unifying monitoring and analysis, accelerating the performance of the networks, and aligning with business purposes.
When you build the best network systems, you do so keeping in mind they might fail in the future. It is exhausting and costly to send in an expert engineer to fix the network hardware each time an outage occurs. Instead, build the network system with redundancy from the start, and create resilience across the infrastructure. The practice ensures that no single outage can impact the user’s access across any of your services.
Enterprises often invite chaos to test the system’s resiliency with the help of some tool. The practice helps the organization understand the weakness of its network systems, strengthen them, and boost its confidence in providing round-the-clock services.
New ways of working
With the advent of cloud computing, organizations aim at providing customers with access to services from anywhere with tight security, apt bandwidth, performance, and cost. With the culture of remote work growing, the need for cloud infrastructure and networking systems to step up is greater than ever. One emerging option to achieve this goal is Secure Access Service Edge (SASE), which when combined with SD-WAN and security capabilities, provides a safer and easier way to access the network irrespective of location.
With rising user demands, enterprises are looking to step up their networking infrastructure to deliver their needs. Cloud computing is leading the way for this revolution, acting as the stepping stone for these modern-day networks. Need to know more about how cloud-led network evolution helps you satisfy your business goals? Let’s discuss and take your journey a step forward.
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