GigaOm Radar for Edge and Core Routingv1.0

Table of Contents

  1. Summary
  2. Deployment Types and Use Cases
  3. Key Criteria Comparison
  4. GigaOm Radar
  5. Vendor Insights
  6. Analyst’s Take
  7. About Andrew Green

1. Summary

While the essence of routing appliances and software has remained consistent throughout the decades, there has been plenty of research and development within the space, for both hardware and software.

The advancements in hardware are fairly intuitive and address the core routing functionalities. These include features such as support for the 800 G and 1.6 Tbps interfaces, as well as support for next-generation optics, such as ZR+, which was designed to maintain the classic Ethernet-only host interface of 400 ZR while adding support for an extended point-to-point reach of up to around 500 km and for optical transport network (OTN) Ethernet.

The software developments are more nuanced and have to do with security, automation, scripting, provisioning, and management. In short, these abstract the networking functions further and expose routing features to the NetDevOps teams, which can define policies as part of their CI/CD pipelines, or via intent-based declarations.

As discussed in the accompanying Key Criteria report, this moves the network one step closer to the application, especially in distributed architectures, where the network is an integral part of every component, providing connectivity between servers and clients, and among distributed functions, web services, and APIs.

In this Radar report, we evaluate routing solutions from a wide variety of networking infrastructure providers. While they are all household names, there is quite a lot of differentiation among their specialties and use cases. Vendors whose main offerings are disaggregated solutions are challenging the traditional monolithic appliances, but they are unlikely to cater to all use cases in such a manner as to turn the industry on its head.

Convergence between radio networks and fixed-line networks is also notable when looking at the vendors featured in the Radar. While the access section of the network is still inherently different, the IP core is now more uniform upstream in the aggregation layers compared to the previous decade.

This GigaOm Radar report highlights key edge and core routing vendors and equips IT decision-makers with the information needed to select the best fit for their business and use case requirements. In the corresponding GigaOm report “Key Criteria for Evaluating Edge and Core Routing Solutions,” we describe in more detail the key features and metrics that are used to evaluate vendors in this market.

How to Read this Report

This GigaOm report is one of a series of documents that helps IT organizations assess competing solutions in the context of well-defined features and criteria. For a fuller understanding, consider reviewing the following reports:

Key Criteria report: A detailed market sector analysis that assesses the impact that key product features and criteria have on top-line solution characteristics—such as scalability, performance, and TCO—that drive purchase decisions.

GigaOm Radar report: A forward-looking analysis that plots the relative value and progression of vendor solutions along multiple axes based on strategy and execution. The Radar report includes a breakdown of each vendor’s offering in the sector.

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