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The global network automation market size was USD 4.00 billion in 2019 and is projected to reach USD 22.58 billion by 2027, exhibiting a CAGR of 24.2% during the forecast period.
The growing number of connected devices, industrial digitalization, and the need to meet the increasing demand for effortless and effective operations at the workplace requires robust processing power at the edge of networks. Additionally, IT departments need agility, consistency, and speed, in managing and provisioning both traditional and cloud-based applications. Network type of automation solutions can accomplish these goals by automating and monitoring network configuration, automatically discovering devices in the network and troubleshooting network issues.
A more sophisticated form of network automation uses big data, artificial intelligence, and machine learning to configure and manage networks. Apart from this, there exist numerous open-source projects that are dedicated to establishing standards for network type of automation through virtualization.
Companies have Temporarily Paused Spending on New Automation Systems amid COVID-19
The COVID-19 pandemic has forced private, public, and government organization employees to work from home, and students to study remotely. This has led to an unforeseen strain on all networking technologies while causing security and bandwidth concerns. The unusual and unprecedented network traffic patterns that have emerged due to pandemic situations are making it stiffer for network engineers to detect anomalies and suspicious behavior of networks.
The automated processes powered by artificial intelligence and machine learning help address these challenges in real-time by scanning dynamically for threats, anomalies and recommending effective mitigations. This type of automation is one of the ways to monitor networks to manage and identify peak network traffic automatically and bandwidth configuration.
On the other side, most companies, especially SMEs, have cut down their expenses due to the loss they have been suffering since the first quarter of 2020. This has temporarily paused spending on new automation initiatives. Also, the delay in 5G rollout is directly affecting the decisions that are related to the adoption of network planning software and professional services spending. However, post-pandemic, as soon as the economies begin to accelerate and 5G spending rebounds, the communication service providers and companies will aim to accelerate their spending on network automation to support new capabilities such as 5G core and network slicing.
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Growing Investments in Emerging Automation Solutions to Propel Market Growth
Advanced technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) support these solutions to analyze data and leverage model-driven network programmability. This enables the companies to deliver predictive analysis, understand network behaviors, and provide recommendations to network operations teams. It helps in reducing the potential human error, improves operational efficiency, and increases network service availability, thereby delivering a better customer experience.
The emergence of real-time telemetry and analytics, single-pane-of-glass management, and Zero Touch Provisioning (ZTP), among others, has led IT teams to adopt network type of automation as the base for a more orchestrated approach to manage and deploy the entire infrastructure.
The cost of manually configuring network services in terms of time and labor is too high. Therefore, IT organizations have started investing in automation solutions to achieve more productivity with less error and further free up human resources for other tasks. Similarly, CSPs are also investing in network and business automation through digital process reengineering as software can change every part of their business, network, and customer interfaces. Thus, the growing investments in automation solutions to drive market growth.
Manufacturing Sector to Accelerate in its Investment Rate to Navigate through the Growing Network Automation Ecosystem
Telecommunication companies have been at the forefront in increasingly prioritizing the integration of new-age technologies into their business operations after the proliferation of 5G. However, in the coming years, the manufacturing sector seems to lead the market in terms of incorporating automation solutions. Network automation solutions in the manufacturing space help improve productivity, streamline operations, and improve the overall customer experience. Recently, the sector’s efforts in working aligned with the growing network automation ecosystem have been highlighted through the following recent developments. For instance,
Thus, in the coming years, the market is expected to witness a rise in the adoption rate of network automation solutions in the manufacturing sector.
Growing Need for IT Automation in Businesses to Bolster Market Growth
Nowadays, one of the major challenges for network managers is the rising costs associated with network operations. The growth of devices and data is outpacing the IT capabilities, making it difficult for the network team to handle operations manually. As per Cisco, around 95 percent of network-related tasks are performed manually, causing operational costs of around 2 to 3 times more than the cost of the network.
Centrally and remotely managed IT automation is a must for companies to keep pace in the digital world. Companies such as Cisco Systems, Inc., Juniper Networks, Inc., and BlueCat Network, Inc., among others, offer network automation tools to impeccably move data and apps between on-premises and cloud-based data centers. For instance, Cisco DNA, an intent-based digital network, helps in transforming manual configuration, provisioning, onboarding, and software management processes to simplify and scale network operations, thereby greatly minimizing the configuration errors.
Surge in Adoption of Connected Devices to Enhance the Market Growth
The connected devices are growing at a faster pace than the overall population. As per Cisco’s Annual Internet Report, the number of devices connected to IP networks is expected to exceed the global population by 3 to 1, with around 29.3 billion networked devices by 2023, up from 18.4 billion networked devices in 2018. The exponential growth of network devices mandates a different approach that is based on automation and self-servicing capabilities that would control and manage the complex data centers and network operations.
Network automation solutions can help networking teams to keep up with this growth by streamlining the maintenance of physical as well as virtual network devices. Thus, the surge in the adoption of connected devices is likely to enhance the global network automation market growth.
Complexities Associated with Network Automation to Impede the Market Growth
The distrust of some companies that automated systems may overlook security threats or might impose too many restrictions on the network is one of the primary reasons hampering the growth of the market. Also, implementing automated solutions or systems in the organization leads to the hiring of professionals or giving training to existing network teams that eventually increases the expenses of the company. Apart from this, there are still no new automation regulations or standards fixed.
Without specifically defined standards, all the networking vendors can come up with different configuration commands, which would make it even more difficult for the networking team to manage infrastructure. Sometimes, it may lead to misconfiguration, resulting in an instant breakdown of the network. For instance, in June 2019, a software bug, which happened to be a runaway automation process caused a major outage in Google.
Adoption of Automation Solutions by Network Teams to Augment Solutions Segment Growth
Based on the component, the market has been segmented into solutions and services.
Among these, the solutions segment is expected to hold the maximum network automation market share owing to the growing adoption of automation solutions by network operation teams to deliver intended outcomes.
The services segment is expected to grow at the highest CAGR due to its dynamic role for training employees and deploying and integrating networking solutions for the businesses.
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Growing Deployment of Virtual Network by Cloud Service Providers and Financial Organizations to Enhance its Adoption
Based on the network type, the market has been categorized into the private network, virtual network, and hybrid network.
Among these, the private network holds the largest market share owing to its major use for traditional communications. Apart from these, the companies are institutionalizing these networks into their operational IT environments. Businesses with highly sensitive and critical data opt for private networks from a data and security standpoint.
The virtual network is the fastest-growing segment owing to the increasing adoption of virtual automation services by several cloud service providers and financial organizations. NTT, eBay, PayPal, and AT&T and some of the companies that have virtualized their networks.
The networking teams are inclined towards hybrid networks to automate and manage their cloud and on-premises infrastructure together. This is likely to lead to the growth of the segment during the forecast period.
Cloud Segment to Show Highest Growth Rate Owing to its Secure and Fast Network Configuration Capability
Based on the deployment type, the market has been bifurcated into on-premises and cloud.
Among these, the on-premises segment dominates the market owing to its ability to provide better control over data and systems. The on-premise solutions offer an annual service agreement and one-time license fee, which includes free installation and up-gradation of new functionalities. However, deployment of on-premises solutions requires individual data centers, dedicated IT staff for the maintenance, and huge infrastructure.
Several companies have started adopting cloud-based solutions that enable secure and fast network configuration by leveraging cloud computing capabilities. Also, cloud-based solutions are easy to deploy and cost-effective and thereby, is likely to propel the segment growth.
Large Enterprises to Capture Major Market Share Owing to Utilization of Automation Solutions to Manage Complex Network Infrastructure
Based on organization size, the market has been bifurcated into large enterprises and SMEs.
The large enterprise segment holds the largest market share owing to the growing preference for these type of automation solutions to monitor and manage vast and complex network infrastructure.
The SMEs segment is expected to be the fastest-growing segment owing to the growing awareness regarding automation among small businesses. The operational and business models of small businesses are inherently different from traditional businesses. Therefore, SMEs are adopting intelligent automation solutions to stay ahead of the competition.
IT and Telecom Industry to Hold Major Market Share Owing to Early Adoption of Network Automation Solutions
The market has been segmented into IT and telecom, BFSI, manufacturing, energy and utilities, healthcare, education, and other industries.
Among these, the IT and telecom segment holds the maximum market share as IT, and telecom service providers are the early adopters of these solutions. To create modern responsive network infrastructure, IT teams of almost all industries have started creating virtualized data centers combined with analytics to help networks to stand up to new challenges and demands.
The manufacturing segment is expected to show the highest CAGR in the forthcoming years due to the advent of Industry 4.0, smart manufacturing, and industrial automation, among others. These initiatives require secure and robust connecting production environments to allow companies and their key clients/partners to access data. Thus, automation solutions are gaining popularity in the manufacturing sector.
North America Network Automation Market Size, 2019 (USD Billion)
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By region, the market has been analyzed across five major regions namely North America, South America, Europe, Middle East and Africa, and Asia Pacific
North America holds the major market share and is expected to maintain its dominance during the forecast period. The growing number of data centers, a rapid shift of SMEs towards digitalization, and the increasing investment in 5G projects are some of the factors driving the market growth in the region. Several enterprises in the US are planning to deploy highly efficient wireless communication solutions to improve their network capacity. This would help in improving the productivity of employees that use digital data and innovative software.
Europe is anticipated to hold the second-largest market share owing to the increasing adoption of automation solutions by telecom service providers to deliver better services to the end-user. Also, the CSPs in this region are focusing on improving the effectiveness of the existing spectrum. The increasing need for compliance management and optimized network owing to the growing internet subscribers is one of the major factors enhancing the growth of the market in this region.
Asia Pacific is anticipated to show the highest growth rate during the forecast period. The increasing investment by countries such as China, Japan, South Korea, and India in the development of the 5G infrastructure is expected to contribute to the growth of the market. Also, the rising adoption of automation in industries, and the growing interest by big giants such as Haier, Cisco, and Schneider, among others, to establish factories or expand their presence in Asian countries is expected to create lucrative opportunities for the market.
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For instance, in December 2019, Schneider Electric launched its second Smart Factory in Bengaluru, India. This facility is aimed at representing the company’s EcoStruxure architecture and related suite of offerings that are used to increase operational efficiency, drive process automation, and reduce costs in the industrial environment.
The Middle East and Africa and South America are expected to show significant growth during the forecast period. The rising security issues and data theft, along with the increasing investment by enterprises on legacy hardware network infrastructure are bolstering the growth of this market in these regions.
Strategic Priorities of the Key Companies Revolves Around Transforming their Business Model
The key companies in the market aim to deliver highly secure, automated, software-defined, intelligent platforms to their customers. The strategic priorities of the key companies include increasing the value of the network, accelerating their pace of innovation, and transforming their business model. The companies continue to invest in optics, silicon and software, the combination of which is considered as the base of intent-based networking solutions. The companies aim at maintaining healthy relationships with distribution partners and a variety of value-added resellers.
June 2020 – Cisco announced the launch of the new intent-based networking solutions to enable optimization of business and network operations. This solution would allow end-users to have greater control over operations while providing enhanced security and insights to drive better digital experiences.
February 2018 – Cisco launched the Crosswork Network Automation software to help service providers to improve their large-scale networks. The software offers greater network visibility at scale, outcome-based automation, and data-driven insights to the customers.
An Infographic Representation of Network Automation Market
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The market research report highlights leading regions across the world to offer a better understanding of the user. Furthermore, the report provides insights into the latest industry verticals or trends and analyzes technologies that are being deployed at a rapid pace at the global level. It further highlights some of the growth-stimulating factors and restraints, helping the reader to gain in-depth knowledge about the market.
Value (USD billion)
Component; Network Type; Deployment; Organization Size; End User and Region
By Network Type
By Organization Size
By End User
The market is projected to reach USD 22.58 billion by 2027.
In 2019, the market stood at USD 4.00 billion in 2019.
The market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 24.2%.
The private network segment is likely to lead the market.
The increasing adoption of connected devices is likely to drive the market growth.
Arista Networks, Inc., BlueCat Networks, Inc., Cisco Systems, Inc., HCL Technologies, Ltd, Infloblox, Juniper Networks, Inc., Red Hat, Inc., Riverbed Technology, Inc., among others are the top players in the market.
North America is expected to hold the highest market share.
Asia Pacific is expected to grow with a significant CAGR.
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