Originally posted on TechTarget on July 2019
As carriers begin their initial pilots of 5G technology, the news primarily covers the effect on consumers and smartphones. But the most overlooked aspect of 5G deployment might come from branch offices and retail locations that need connectivity back to headquarters via wide area networks. 5G technology is about to transform these WANs, while software-defined WAN deployments are beginning to accelerate.
For years, WANs have been difficult and costly, primarily because of the scripting and command-line configuration that was so time-consuming for both deployment and ongoing management. Software-defined WAN (SD-WAN) brings a GUI and rules-based overlay to the WAN circuit, enabling a WAN that is much easier to deploy and run. Many of these SD-WAN products are zero-touch, self-configuring and can be brought online minutes after being plugged in.
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