Big Switch Evolves SDN Technology [VIDEO]

Big Switch co-founder Kyle Forster discusses how the SDN world has changed since his company first helped to pioneer the space.

By Sean Michael Kerner | Posted Jan 12, 2015
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At the beginning of the SDN (Software Defined Networking) era, Big Switch Networks was an early leader and pioneer. Over the years, the SDN market has become significantly more crowded, both in terms of vendors and technology promises.

Helping to lead Big Switch from day one through to the modern evolution of SDN is the company's co-founder Kyle Forster. In a video interview with Enterprise Networking Planet, Forster explains how both his company and its SDN message have evolved.

While SDN in the early days was mostly hype, Forster said that today it is real. As a simple proof point of the SDN's reality, Forster noted that there is customer adoption and deployment today of SDN. Those deployments are not just about Proof of Concept (PoC) initiatives but also about large deployments at scale.

"There has been a lot of healthy buzz for a long time, but now we really need to convert it into healthy businesses," Forster said. "We're seeing more and more RFP's in the way that three years ago we saw a lot of interesting discussions."

As part of the evolution of SDN, Forster noted that Big Switch no longer actually sells SDN as a product. From a product perspective, he said that customers are more interested in hearing about solutions to problems, rather than the underlying technology. Big Switch's Big Tap fabric is about large-scale network monitoring. For Big Switch's Big Cloud Fabric, the discussion is about next-generation data center switching and routing.

Moving forward, the plan for Big Switch is to continue to evolve SDN.

"If you look at what's next, with our fundamental core controller technology we have in my mind, something like Tesla's battery, that will be important for years and years," Forster said. "First we built on the monitoring application, next was cloud fabric and there will be more there."

Watch the full video with Kyle Forster below:


Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at Enterprise Networking Planet and InternetNews.com. Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist.

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