Top 5 Takeaways from Aryaka’s State of the WAN Report

Global WAN
Last month, we released our third annual State of the WAN report, detailing major trends in WAN traffic growth and application response times over the public Internet over the last year. The report returned several important findings – some surprising and others confirming trends that have been a long time in the making.

By aggregating, anonymizing, and analyzing data from over 5000 locations in 63 countries and across a wide range of industries, we were able to put together a comprehensive picture of traffic growth and patterns on the enterprise WAN.

I, along with Scott Raynovich, Principal Analyst at Futuriom Research, shared our top insights from the report in a recent webinar. You can watch the full video on-demand here and find the top five takeaways below.

1. WAN traffic is growing – and it’s growing across all regions and verticals.

Traffic Growth Across the Enterprise WAN
This year, the volume of traffic across the enterprise WAN grew by 200%. This growth does not seem to be slowing down any time soon, especially in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region. While there’s been a slight slowdown in growth in developed Western countries, that is to be expected: these countries innovated first and no longer need to grow as rapidly as they did during the innovation phase. APAC is now catching up, which is why growth is picking up in this region.

Across verticals, the most interesting data comes from Manufacturing, which grew 440% over the past year. Manufacturing is currently experiencing a shift toward a convergence of operational technology and information technology, and it will be interesting to keep an eye on this industry as more and more of its operations “go online” in the coming years.

2. There is no more “shift” to the cloud: The cloud is here.

cloud applications 2016 vs 2015
Fifty percent of the data traversing the enterprise WAN was either HTTP or HTTPS – meaning that half of enterprise data is now to and from the cloud.

For years, industry experts have been prognosticating a “shift” to the cloud – and it appears that those predictions have more than come true. Web-based consumption and delivery models – “as-a-service” – is now clearly a standard.

The data also revealed a drop in “on-premises” traffic, lending further fuel to the cloud-based fire. As expected, the shift to the cloud is now non-negotiable.

3. The demand for larger link sizes is growing.

At least 25% of Aryaka’s customers have one or more 100 Mbps links, and we saw a 50% decrease in links with bandwidth less than 10 Mbps. Even developing countries have links above 2 Mbps.

Why the increased demand for larger links? With WAN traffic growing, enterprises are attempting to beat middle mile congestion with larger links at the edge.

Does this solve for congestion-related packet loss? We dig deeper in the full report.

4. Traffic over the public Internet is unreliable and unpredictable.

While this is not a surprise, the State of the WAN report digs deep into the data to understand exactly how unreliable the public Internet really is.

Even over short distances, application response times can be variable, although in regions with better infrastructure, such as the US, regional data transfer can be less prone to latency.
TCP Application Response time stats
The report revealed that TCP application response times can be as high as 40 seconds and have a variation of nearly 200% depending on the distance between the sites. The longer the distance the worse the problem. For example, the link with the highest variability in response time was the link between Singapore and Dubai.

5. Distance isn’t the only reason for poor application response times.

As mentioned, in areas where there is good infrastructure, application response times did not suffer terribly over short distances on the public Internet (although there was still room for improvement).

However, in some geographies, such as the Middle East and parts of Asia, regional data transfer was still subject to unpredictability.

In some instances, the variation in response time can be as high as 153%, with an average application response time around one second.

Want more? Read the whole report here and watch the webinar on-demand

About the author

Shilpa Swamy
Shilpa Swamy

Shilpa Swamy is Product Marketing Manager at Aryaka Networks. She has a background in Product Management and has held various engineering roles in the telecom and networking industry.