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SDN Vendors Vie For Market, Mindshare

While software-defined networking is key to every networking vendor’s product strategy, that doesn’t mean IT is buying the message. In fact, InformationWeek's most recent SDN Survey shows that most vendors earn a failing grade when it comes to explaining their plans.

The survey asked respondents to rate on a scale of 1 through 5 how familiar they are with the SDN strategies of 20 vendors, with a score of 5 equaling “extremely familiar.” Except for Cisco, which eked out a gentleman’s C with a rating of 3.1 out of 5, respondents are generally unfamiliar with vendors’ plans.

The survey also asked which vendors’ strategies best address their organizations’ requirements. A majority of respondents, 58%, say Cisco’s SDN strategy best fits their business needs, perhaps as a result of its market share leadership and ability to directly communicate its vision and product plans with customers. Other major enterprise vendors, including Arista, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, and Juniper, are bunched in the 16% range, while small SDN specialty shops such as Embrane, Midokura, and Plexxi are barely blips on respondents’ radar screens.

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