Our CTO Cengiz Alaettinoglu recently published an article in RCR Wireless’ Reality Check column titled “Stumbling Block: SDN Management Challenges.” He discusses three SDN applications that are particularly valuable for wireless carriers: bandwidth calendaring, demand placement, and rapid provisioning. In fact, Cengiz says that rapid provisioning “…is indeed surfacing as the killer SDN application for carriers beyond the data center.”
However, these applications cannot be used successfully in SDN environments until the industry solves numerous management challenges. Traditional, manual management methods and processes cannot keep up in a programmable, automated network environment. As a result, the human operator loses visibility and control, making it difficult to understand how to plan for the rollout of new applications and services. Lack of oversight creates a sort of wild west environment without anyone or anything governing whether or not these programmatic changes should be made.
Cengiz is currently working on a prototype of a Network Access Broker that will verify if the WAN can handle the traffic demands of SDN applications without impacting other applications adversely. You can read more about what he says is needed in the RCR wireless article.
See also our SDN video series featuring Cengiz and Jim Frey, Vice President of Research for analyst firm Enterprise Management Associates: http://www.packetdesign.com/access/sdn-good-bad-ugly