How to Avoid SD-WAN Vendor Lock-In

How to Avoid SD-WAN Vendor Lock-In

Few things are worse than the feeling that you’re not in control of your own destiny. It’s the reason many entrepreneurs abandon the safety of a paycheck to start their own businesses. It’s also the reason many new technologies come into existence. The struggle for freedom keeps us all moving until we reach a position of control.

SD-WAN is one of those developments that came from the search for freedom. And it still can be — if you know how to avoid SD-WAN vendor lock-in.

Freedom from the Telecom Trap

When SD-WAN was first developed, the goal was to free service providers from their inherent reliance on large telecommunications and cable companies — many of whom hold regional monopolies. The idea behind SD-WAN was to provide an empowering, liberating source of connectivity.

Sadly, that didn’t last as vendors started to recognize the potential for profit from the technology.

Vendors began to look at SD-WAN with dollar signs in their eyes. It was soon obvious that the technology could be used to lock service providers into binding contracts, with vendors raking in massive revenue from the sales.

Today’s SD-WAN

Despite the trap of SD-WAN vendor lock-in, the technology has continued to gain popularity. SD-WAN has gained widespread adoption as enterprises recognized its benefits:

  • Reduced reliance on telecoms and cable companies
  • Improved ability to use both public and private connections
  • Full control over routing and management
  • Increased uptime and performance

But as SD-WAN technology has evolved, many industry professionals have lost sight of the fact that it’s grown into something far different than what its creators envisioned.

Many SD-WAN services on the market today are diluted versions of the original idea. In a nutshell, service providers are getting a raw deal. Victims of SD-WAN vendor lock-in, they’re selling privately-branded SD-WAN services that give them almost no control over marketing, margins, or deployment.

Avoiding SD-WAN Vendor Lock-In

Avoiding SD-WAN Vendor Lock-In

It sounds like SD-WAN vendor lock-in is unavoidable, doesn’t it?

Many organizations will tell you it is. Or that it’s not that bad. But there are ways to get around it. And one of them is white-labeling. A white-labeled SD-WAN solution can free you from vendor lock-in and provide you with a wide range of benefits, including:

  • Higher margins
  • Full control over pricing, network, marketing, and more
  • Ability to leverage multi-tenant spaces
  • Reduced reliance on external infrastructure
  • Ability to customize your offering

Effectively, a white-label solution lets you free your business from the shackles of connectivity vendors. You can avoid the trap of SD-WAN vendor lock-in and run your business, your way.

The White Box Solution

Isn’t SD-WAN vendor lock-in basically unavoidable? It doesn’t matter who you partner with, you’re going to be stuck with their solutions for the length of your contract, right?

Some analysts may claim it’s impossible to avoid being stuck with one SD-WAN vendor.

“There’s no way to avoid vendor lock-in on anything. Just because this is software, doesn’t mean it’s interoperable. You wouldn’t take a Viptela appliance and try to plug it into a VeloCloud data center.”

Lee Doyle, Doyle Research

“The key is not that vendor lock-in is necessarily bad, but instead that it limits choices.”

John Fruehe, independent analyst

But we’re confident those analysts are wrong.

You can absolutely de-link software and hardware to avoid SD-WAN vendor lock-in. And the benefits of doing so are worth considering:

  • More flexibility (for both you and your customers)
  • Lower cost
  • Higher ROI
  • The ability to use equipment you already have instead of investing in new

Ready for a Better Option?

At Turnium, we’re working to help our clients avoid SD-WAN vendor lock-in. We want network administrators to know there are other options out there. They don’t have to be stuck selling someone else’s privately-branded SD-WAN solution.

Our white-label SD-WAN solution means service providers are in control. We provide the connectivity and the service provider gets to call all the shots.

Want to learn more about the business and technical advantages of white-labeled SD-WAN? Get in touch with our experts today.