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Natilik Blog

Natilik Blog – read our latest thinking on IT and Communication technology and solutions

SD-WAN and the 5G Transformation

With the highly anticipated rise of 5G swiftly approaching, Cisco are hard at work to bring the next generation of cellular technology to customers who are already experiencing the benefits of SD-WAN. However, now is the time to look beyond the promises of speed improvements with 5G, to the more taxing security and performance challenges that are on the horizon. 

 So, what are the risks we’re expecting to see and how are Cisco going to overcome them?






One topic that seems to obtain very little traction when discussing the 5G future are the security challenges that it presents. Unlike 4G, 5G will split large frequencies into smaller ‘slices’, resulting in an increase of potential attack vectors across the network which exposes all slices to the potential of being compromised. There is also expected to be an exponential growth in the number of cellular connected devices throughout the enterprise WAN, only increasing the risk of malicious threat. Cisco SD-WAN will continue to provide end-to-end security to this increasingly complex network by enabling a strict and consistent policy enforcement and abnormality tracking, even as the speed and size of traffic increases with 5G.







Application efficiency will be another critical focus for Cisco come the release of 5G, as a rise in data between the edge, DC and cloud continues. Although 5G will provide a larger transition window that could improve service level agreements for customers, it is not beneficial to think of 5G in the same parameters as 4G. The reality is that applications and workloads will expand within the new environment, making quality of service a continual uphill climb for Cisco. This will also mean that technology will set new, higher standards for global commerce, making latency of more than 10 milliseconds a potential competitive disadvantage in the future. However, Cisco SD-WAN is well prepared for these challenges, ensuring that service won’t be lost to latency and ensuring enterprises continue to maintain service level agreements through AppQoE.







Global service providers will be utilising two different frequency types that face their own respective deployment issues, but are ready to face an aggressive network build-out in the race to a 5G future. Whilst many initial roll-outs will on the Sub-6 GHz standard, 5G coverage is projected to reach 40% of the global population by 2024.

Since the adoption of 5G is expected to be more modest than carrier deployment, many enterprises will still have to continue to manage 4G, 5G, DSL, Ethernet, and MPLS connections over the next few years. Fortunately, Cisco SD-WAN provides businesses with the ability to focus on application performance across the network instead of individual WAN services, enabling easy set-up of any connection type with safety and security.





If you have any questions about Cisco’s strong history in combining cellular technology with leading networking platforms, or what Cisco SD-WAN could bring to your business, speak to your Account Director or contact us to hear back from one of our networking specialists.


Laura Keen, Marketing Executive