Affordable MPLS Alternatives

After decades of use, enterprises are looking for MPLS alternatives. To be considered a viable alternative, a network must match MPLS’ service levels for predictability and consistency, while avoiding its pitfalls of cost, rigidity and capacity constraints. Although often used for WAN connectivity, the public Internet lacks the consistently low packet loss, jitter, and latency levels of MPLS. It can’t provide a predictable user experience for latency- and loss sensitive applications, such as Voice-over-IP (VoiP) and virtual desktops, particularly across global connections.

Affordable MPLS alternatives must enable an agile WAN, a consistent application experience on a global scale, and be delivered at a reasonable price. Deploying new sites, expanding capacity and gaining full control over network traffic, must be easier than with MPLS.

Edge SD-WAN Challenges

Edge SD-WAN architectures enable organizations to use multiple transports (MPLS and Internet) in branch locations, for WAN connectivity. However, they persist the dependency on MPLS for predictable delivery of latency- and loss-sensitive applications.

The Cato Solution:

Cloud-based SD-WAN

Cato provides a cloud-based SD-WAN with a built-in global backbone with integrated network security, delivered as a cloud service. With over 30 PoPs worldwide and interconnected with tier-1 global IP transit providers, Cato provides consistent and predictable global connectivity at an affordable price.

SLA-backed Transport

Persists the reliance on MPLS

Edge SD-WAN integrates Internet transport into an MPLS WAN. However, since the Internet can’t provide consistent and predictable latency on a global scale, MPLS is required for latency- and loss sensitive applications.

Full MPLS replacement

Cato has built a global, SLA-backed backbone that runs an integrated networking and security software stack. Cato’s PoPs are fully meshed over multiple tier-1 IP transit providers with SLA-backed latency and packet loss. With Cato, customers can use high-quality, Internet last mile and the Cato Cloud to replace MPLS.

Integrated Network Security

Complex and costly security integration

Edge SD-WAN solutions enable the use of Internet links for WAN transport and can provide direct Internet access at the branch. However, they do not include a full network security stack and require customers to either deploy additional security solutions at every location, backhaul traffic to a datacenter, or use cloud-based security services.  

Built-in network security

Cato provides a full network security stack, including a next generation firewall, secure web gateway, anti-malware and IPS built into the SLA-backed backbone. There is no need to deploy branch security appliances, backhaul traffic, or introduce new security services. All policies are managed within Cato’s management application.

Supported Edges

Limited support for cloud infrastructure and mobile users

Edge SD-WAN solutions were designed with physical locations in mind. Typical WAN architectures treat cloud datacenters and mobile users as an afterthought.

Seamless support for physical, cloud and mobile resources

Cato was built to connect all enterprise network elements including physical locations, cloud infrastructure, and mobile users. With Cato, SD-WAN and network security is available globally and for traffic from all sources.

The Cato Solution:

Cloud-based MPLS Alternative
with built-in Global Backbone and Network Security

Cato’s cloud-based SD-WAN enables customers to augment and ultimately replace MPLS. Unlike Edge SD-WAN solutions that have a limited scope and persist the need for MPLS, Cato removes the dependency on MPLS. Cato further extends WAN transformation to eliminate branch security appliances, and natively support cloud applications and mobile users. With Cato, customers can maximize the benefits of transforming their WAN to reduce the cost, complexity, and risks of their IT infrastructure.  


Customer Case-study

Alewijnse Reduces MPLS Costs

Alewijnse is distributed globally across Europe, Middle East and Asia. We were looking to simplify and improve our network and security infrastructure, reduce the cost of MPLS and be more flexible and fast in adding temporary project locations to our WAN. Multiple providers were considered to address these needs, but Cato enabled us to meet all of them with a single platform.

In the first phase, we connected three of our offices in the Netherlands, Romania, Vietnam with our datacenter. We successfully replaced our MPLS last-mile links with Internet links while maintaining the quality of our high definition video conferencing system and our Citrix platform for 2D and 3D CAD across the company.

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How to Re-evaluate Your MPLS Service Provider

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