Macquarie Telecom has launched a software-defined wide area network (SD-WAN)service \u2013 which it claims is the only in Australia to be able to leverage multiple carriers \u2013 as it seeks to tap into a booming market expected to grow to US$1 billion by the end of the year.\nThe telco said it researched 28 providers worldwide before deciding to partner US cloud SD-WAN pioneer VeloCloud to offer the service, which is available from today.\n\u201cIt\u2019s the most exciting development in the market since the dawn of 3G. Just as businesses are turning to the cloud to support the new application-focused culture, it\u2019s only natural that networks follow,\u201d said Luke Clifton, group executive, Macquarie Telecom.\nClifton added that 80 customers were already using the service.\n\u201cWe\u2019re not testing the waters here,\u201d he said. \u201cThis is ready for market.\u201d\nThe offering features \u2018intelligent dynamic packet routing\u2019 meaning network functions and information can be carried over a mix of links which might include NBN, 4G or microwave links. The software automatically chooses the best pathway to transmit application information and workloads, ensuring the highest speed and lowest latency is always achieved.\nIf a link goes down, others take over, meaning users rarely experience any downtime or outages, and \u201cno one in the business will even know it has happened\u201d the company said.\nCompetitors, Macquarie claimed, tended to use path selection, which will try to reinitiate over a dropped link before switching to another.\n\u201cIt\u2019s like always knowing which lane will get me from A to B the fastest,\u201d said Michael Davies, customer and emerging technologies director, Macquarie Telecom. \u201cIf there\u2019s traffic on the road, the SD-WAN can automatically change my lane to that with the least amount of traffic within milliseconds \u2013 and I don\u2019t have to do a thing, the system changes the lane for me automatically. That is the level of automation and simplicity available to our SD-WAN customers.\u201d\nBusinesses get visibility on up to 2,500 applications running across their networks via Macquarie\u2019s Orchestrator platform, and are able to see in real time which apps are using up bandwidth. Mission-critical apps can be assigned a higher priority, for example, a VoIP or video conference call can be put above email, the company said.\nBallooning market\nEnterprises are relying more and more on SD-WAN to streamline connections among enterprise sites, resulting in a market for the technology which is expected to balloon from $225 million in 2015 to US$1.19 billion by the end of this year, according to IDC.\n \nOver the next five years, SD-WAN sales will grow at a 69 per cent compound annual growth rate, hitting US$8.05 billion in 2021, according to IDC\u2019s Worldwide SD-WAN Forecast, 2017\u20132021.\n \n\u201cSD-WAN offers compelling value for its ability to defray MPLS costs, simplify and automate WAN operations, improve application traffic management, and dynamically deliver on the cost and efficiency benefits associated with intelligent path selection,\u201d IDC analysts Rohit Mehra and Brad Casemore write in the report.\n \nClifton said the launch would help propel Macquarie into this growing market.\n \n\u201cWe have a proud history of developing business-grade innovations in the telecoms sector and this is the next stage in the evolution of telecommunications, one that promises to be as profound as virtualisation has been to computing,\u201d Clifton added.