Application-Aware Networking a Long Way From Reality, Heavy Reading Finds

Network operators are realizing that true AAN services will need more development than originally thought, says Heavy Reading Service Provider IT Insider

Feb 12, 2014, 09:00 ET from Heavy Reading

NEW YORK, Feb. 12, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Network operators are finding out that their ability to deliver application-aware networking (AAN) services is not as strong as they originally believed, and true AAN will require some serious development work, according to the latest report from Heavy Service Provider IT Insider (, a subscription research service from Heavy Reading (

Application-Aware Networking: The Carrier Perspective examines the concept of application-aware networking (AAN), specifically from the carrier's point of view. It covers current trends and issues in the market, including application performance challenges and the shift to AAN. Finally, the report provides status reports on 11 prominent carriers in the market.

For a list of companies covered in this report,

"Until recently, market participants typically believed they could, and needed to, achieve acceptable application performance levels with resources near at hand," says Steve Koppman, research analyst with Heavy Reading Service Provider IT Insider and author of the report. "New challenges were most often met by adding bandwidth or devices, with no requirement for anything like AAN."

As the network undergoes upheaval, it is harder to tell where problems are and where they will emerge, Koppman says. "At the same time network managers in this environment have increasing responsibility for application flow and greater expectations placed upon them to keep things under control, they have declining ability to see how applications fit together and where problems are originating," he continues. "AAN will become much more pervasive, widespread and 'normalized' over the next three to five years, and a significant penetration of application-awareness capabilities will become fairly common and a virtual requirement in some environments."

Key findings of Application-Aware Networking: The Carrier Perspective include the following:

  • True AAN remains far from realization.
  • A few overseas carriers including Telstra and BT appear to be leading the way toward development.
  • Comprehensively AAN services will begin to emerge in two to three years.
  • AAN refers to automated network monitoring that dynamically, on an automated basis, promotes application functionality.
  • Increasing demand for networks to function like the "cloud" is a pivotal driver.
  • AAN "precursors" APM and WAN optimization are widely available, though used by a distinct minority of enterprise IP VPN customers.
  • AAN, like many industry terms, continues to be used in wildly inconsistent ways.

Application-Aware Networking: The Carrier Perspective is available as part of an annual single-user subscription (six issues) to Heavy Reading Service Provider IT Insider, priced at $1,595. Individual reports are available for $900 (single-user license).

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About Heavy Reading
Heavy Reading (, the research division of Light Reading, offers deep analysis of emerging telecom trends to network operators, technology suppliers, and investors. Its product portfolio includes in-depth reports that address critical next-generation technology and service issues, market trackers that focus on the telecom industry's most critical technology sectors, exclusive worldwide surveys of network operator decision-makers that identify future purchasing and deployment plans, and a rich array of custom and consulting services that give clients the market intelligence needed to compete successfully in the global telecom industry.

About Light Reading
Light Reading ( combines its research-led online communities and targeted events portfolio to help those in the global communications industry make informed decisions. is the ultimate source for telecom analysis for more than 350,000 subscribers each month, leading the media sector in terms of traffic, content, and reputation. Light Reading produces targeted communications events and focused one-day conferences each year for cable, mobile, and wireline executives across five continents.

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Heavy Reading

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SOURCE Heavy Reading