Edgar Dias, senior regional director, Brocade India and SAARC throws light on the evolutions in the enterprise networking space, the shift to open networking and how Brocade is positioned to serve the changing networking needs of its customers
Please share some insights into how the enterprise networking industry is evolving in India. How are customer preferences changing?
Businesses are looking towards open networking and standardization as they eliminate the need for proprietary infrastructure and look to reduce costs and at the same time increase flexibility. Open Networking, which involves the development of an open, flexible and adaptable solution is fast gaining popularity and acceptance. SDN paves the way for faster digital transformation, faster time-to-market, quicker network provisioning including customized network functions and independence from physical topology as it eliminates network-related restrictions.
There is also a fundamental change happening in the customer’s approach towards decision making and how they do business with the vendor. In the past, it was a waterfall model with the customers initiating RFP, everybody responding and the winner working for a couple of years to deliver the product. That’s not the case now. The modern customer has become much more sophisticated, but at the same time, they often do not know what they want. Sometimes, the problem is extremely new for Brocade too as the customer is making the transition and technology is also changing fast. Brocade takes the approach of POCs, brainstorms with them and helps solve their pain points.
Please elaborate a bit on Brocade’s open strategy? How is the company increasing traction for its software-based solutions?
Brocade believes that open networking solutions and architectures are the future of networking, The biggest differentiation for us is we have an open architecture that is built around open standards and we have relationships across the spectrum that allows our customers to adopt best-of-breed solutions. One way we are demonstrating that, is through our work with OpenDaylight for the Brocade SDN Controller. OpenDaylight is a Linux Foundation Project that unites industry leaders in developing an open SDN platform in a vendor-neutral environment. The project is committed to furthering the adoption of SDN.
The Brocade SDN Controller, the first commercial Controller built directly from OpenDaylight code, allows users to freely optimize their network infrastructure to address the needs of their specific workloads.
The Brocade Flow Optimizer is also an SDN application that supports an OpenDaylight-based controller that provides real-time policy-based management for network traffic flows. When coupled with Brocade MLXe routers, the Brocade Flow Optimizer enables service providers and enterprises to gain proactive insight into their network traffic, mitigate network attacks, and eliminate network congestion, with the ultimate goal of improving the end user experience.
Additionally, we also offer scalable, SDN-enabled and SDN-ready networking platforms, including Brocade MLX Series router, Brocade VDX switch and Brocade ICX switch families. We have a virtual router, virtual switch, virtual load balancer and virtual firewall as well.
How is Brocade competing against major competitors like Cisco, Arista Networks and Juniper Networks?
Brocade is leading the industry, moving from hardware-based networking to software-based networking by embracing openness.
Brocade provides the enterprises and service providers an ability to build an infrastructure that is open and programmable.
The competitors can catch up on these features, but what service providers and customers value the most is that they can build their own services and applications on top of Brocade stack because of an open API on every layer. Brocade has a much broader portfolio of open products than Arista, Juniper or Cisco. It has everything from routers to switches that are campus-ready devices to data-center-ready devices. We have virtual software capabilities that span across the entire data center. Some of our main competitors have closed architecture solutions, so one has to build out based on the closed architecture. Their architectures are optimized around their servers but Brocade architecture is optimized around the server one wants to use.