A common debate among IT engineers and professionals are whether newer Software-Defined Wide Area Networking (SD-WAN) is better than more traditional Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) to handle their network flow. In the past, wide-area networking (WAN) services relied solely on MPLS (and the lengthy hardware programming that came along with it).
However, with the development of SD-WAN, businesses now have the option of software-defined networks instead. Let’s look more into the pros and cons of each, as well as at the cost benefit of digitally transforming your organization from MPLS to SD-WAN. Then, you can better determine for yourself if it’s the right move for your company to make.
The Pros and Cons of MPLS
MPLS has been the mainstay for many companies for a long time. Its technology is proven and reliable. Additionally, it provides a high-quality connection as well as a consistent user experience.
However, if you want to get the most you can out of MPLS, it does require WAN Optimization – and those bandwidth costs can add up (especially if you have multiple branches and data centers that you need to secure). Plus, programming is necessary at the hardware level, and that can become a lengthy and expensive process too.
The Pros and Cons of SD-WAN
The main difference between MPLS and SD-WAN is that SD-WAN is comprised of software rather than hardware. Therefore, its main advantages over MPLS are its flexibility, affordability, and security. Plus, having a software-based cloud network is simpler to control and monitor, and it also helps keep your sensitive information safe. However, since you are connecting to the cloud, there is the possibility of jitter and packet loss that could result in occasionally slow performance.
Since SD-WAN is software-based, there is no need to purchase proprietary hardware. Therefore, you have the freedom to change vendors in the future if you want to (without enduring a costly switch that would require even more hardware programming).
In addition to reducing your hardware costs, SD-WAN also lowers your WAN connectivity costs too. And since your SD-WAN is deployed and managed through the cloud, you will also enjoy increased performance of your cloud applications. Plus, SD-WAN does not have bandwidth limitations (like MPLS), so you can easily expand if necessary.
What is the Right Choice for Your Company?
As you can see, if you are considering a digital transformation from MPLS to SD-WAN for your company, there is a definite cost advantage. Therefore, it makes sense why so many companies are making the switch over to SD-WAN. However, it is essential to weigh both the pros and cons of each network solution before making your decision.
Navigating the ever-changing technology industry can be challenging. At The Cloud Truth, we use our 23 years of experience in the technology field to help you find solutions that will work best for your business. If you would like more information about MPLS or SD-WAN, or if you are interested in comparing providers, please contact us today.