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Networking Solutions Trends in 2024

Networking solutions trends in 2022

Below is a list of networking solutions trends our team of experts recommend businesses should follow in 2022 in order utilize today’s current technologies and applications.

Blending Networking and Cybersecurity

Over time, networking technology has become mixed with cybersecurity technology.

A network firewall began as a straightforward solution that performed a narrow scope of functions, including blocking unsolicited incoming network traffic and validating access by assessing traffic for malware, hackers, etc. Today, a next-generation network firewall has multiple security appliances in one device, performing functions of a traditional firewall but boosting protection through heuristics (ie. analysis using rules, estimates and educated guesses for prediction) or artificial intelligence (AI). Next-generation protection also delivers unified threat management (UTM), which includes:

  • Antivirus software
  • Intrusion Detection System and Intrusion
  • Prevention System (IDS/IPS)
  • Deep Packet Inspection (DPI) of SSL traffic
  • Safelisting/blocklisting software

Similarly, when looking at a first-generation SD-WAN solution, the edge device is essentially a router and a load balancer combined into one. Today, SD-WAN and security functionality are being bundled together as a “secure SD-WAN” appliance that keeps your business connected, guarantees redundancy and increases security.

Consolidation of networking and functionality under a single management plane increases management complexity — an area where an MSP like TPx can help.

Remote Network Access

While it’s a tired statement, the pandemic has dramatically changed the way every company does business. According to Upwork’s Future Workforce Pulse Report, 22 percent of the workforce (36.2 million Americans) will be working remotely by 2025.

This trend has resulted in a need to identify top applications that need priority, like video calling, which is where the majority of sales are taking place today. Businesses literally can’t afford for the connection to be poor. In addition, streaming applications like Hulu and Netflix needs to be deprioritized so that critical applications like CRMs, PRMs, PMS, file-sharing systems, accounting systems and communications aren’t affected.

Additionally, remote workers need to securely connect to the business network from home, so VPNs and home-based SD-WAN deployments have become more commonplace.

Secure Access Service Edge

Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) moves away from data center-oriented security. It unifies your network and security tools into a single service delivered via the cloud, providing edge-to-edge protection for remote users and data centers.

SASE is an upcoming player potentially and the market is still determining hype or whether it’s adopted. MSPs like TPx are assessing the value of SASE for delivery to SMB customers. It’s worth noting that there is nothing new about SASE technology except that it’s packaged and consolidated onto a single platform.

Managed Switching

Switching is often overlooked, but TPx sees growth in the managed switching market. Managed switches offer a range of features that can be configured by IT professionals to optimize network performance, availability and security.

Managed switches are a must for networks where reliability and security are critical, such as those used by government agencies, universities and healthcare organizations.

However, with their additional functionality, managed switches require more expertise to provision and manage, which entails having greater skills or the assistance of a knowledgeable MSP like TPx.

Wi-Fi 6

Today, business Wi-Fi networks are struggling to keep up with the dramatic increase in the number of wireless devices and high-bandwidth multimedia applications — not to mention the influx of 8K video, virtual reality and 5G network traffic. WLANs need to handle higher density and higher throughput requirements as well as issues associated with radio interference and security.

Wi-Fi 6, also known as High-Efficiency WLAN, is the answer. Wi-Fi 6 lays the groundwork for the growing use of internet-connected hardware and devices as well as applications like collaborative high-definition (HD) video streaming, augmented reality and virtual reality.

Wi-Fi 6 not only triples the maximum throughput of Wi-Fi 5 but delivers better indoor signal penetration and supports greater device density. Wi-Fi 6 has enhanced capabilities to effectively handle increasing traffic demands, capacity, coverage and network intelligence.

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