Infonetics research says "the “real” market for SDN—that is, in-use for SDN Ethernet switches and controllers—to reach $9.5 billion in 2018"
“There is no longer any question about software-defined networking (SDN) playing a role in data center and enterprise networks. Data center and enterprise SDN revenue, including SDN capable Ethernet switches and SDN controllers, was up 192% year-over-year (2013 over 2012),” reports Cliff Grossner, Ph.D., directing analyst for data center, cloud, and SDN at Infonetics Research. “The early SDN explorers—NEC in Japan and pure-play SDN startups in North America—were joined in 2013 by the majority of traditional switch vendors and server virtualization vendors offering a wide selection of SDN products.”
"Even more eye opening," continues Grossner, “In-use for SDN Ethernet switch revenue, including branded Ethernet switches, virtual switches, and bare metal switches, grew more than 10-fold in 2013 from the prior year, driven by significant increases in white box bare metal switch deployments by very large cloud service providers such as Google and Amazon.”
Other findings shared by Infonetics includes:
Vendors are seeding the market with SDN-capable Ethernet switches in the data center and enterprise LAN
The leaders in the SDN market will be solidified during the next 2 years, as 2014 lab trials give way to live production deployments
Bare metal switches are the top in-use for SDN-capable switch use case in the data center and are anticipated to account for 31% of total SDN-capable switch revenue by 2018
The adoption of SDN network virtualization overlays (NVOs) is expected to go mainstream by 2018