As businesses embrace regional and global deployments, they need networks that are tailored towards the cloud. Points-of-Presence (PoPs) enables this deployment for growing businesses. Put simply, they are the access point connecting users to their network provider, whether it is across internet portals or LTE (4G and 5G).
The primary function of each PoP is to host the multi-tenant proprietary software stack.
These PoPs also have multiple ISP edge providers for on-board customer traffic with industry-standard IPsec to allow each enterprise to collaborate seamlessly and securely.
By authenticating and encrypting packets of data, PoPs provide businesses with the bandwidth they need.
PoPs are crucial to business processes, strategically located to give end-users optimal access to Cloud, SaaS applications and data centers. Companies that enable strong connectivity for their mission-critical applications benefit from a flexible approach that fits the speed of business today.
PoPs pop up in discussions centered on regional vs. global scale and quality vs. quantity approach. For a global PoPs system, there has to be a strategic regional implementation, localized in countries and continents to create dense connectivity hubs. These can be scaled up quickly with just a preliminary base-level of connectivity. In terms of quality vs. quantity, however, the old adage of 'bigger is better' does not equate to PoPs. It is the functionality of the hardware which underpins the connectivity, not the volume.
From Newcastle to New York: regional and global PoPs deployment
Many businesses are driven by the desire for global growth and scalability, whether it is a Silicon Valley start-up or a Berlin-based company looking to expand into South-East Asia. The ability to scale can, however, be a thorn in the side of businesses if they do not initially have a strong networking structure to build upon.
Rome was not built in a day and a global business will not survive without a network system based upon core interlinked regions. Global deployment in this sense is impossible without strong regional deployment. If you cannot meet bandwidth demands for South America for example then a global business network has fallen at the first hurdle.
With the flexibility and agility provided by the “as-a-Service” model, regional businesses can embrace a cloud-first SD-WAN model which progresses their network infrastructure beyond the restraints of MPLS and broadband-only connectivity.
Enterprises now recognize that MPLS is costly, slow to deploy, and its traditional hub-and-spoke architecture from the branch to HQ and/or the data center does not support the overwhelming need to optimize cloud deployments. The flexibility of a cloud-first method that moves away from sole reliance on MPLS enables deployment for dense, localized networks connected to a couple of PoPs.
Time for enterprises to unleash their “as-a-Service” offerings
Companies may be under the illusion that the shift from regional to global networking and vice versa requires a huge volume of PoPs to enable this. This does not always equate to better. It is the quality and performance of the hardware and the orchestration behind the PoPs network which enables enterprise scalability.
Scalability is a persistent challenge for businesses.
If your Salesforce is taking two weeks to be operational in your new branch or your Office 365 is down and your workers cannot access email, the tangible reality is that revenue will drop and your business will be unable to run.
The flexible approach enabled by PoPs ensures cloud-first connectivity. Each of these PoPs are connected to one another using multiple private links (from different providers) to deliver reliable, enterprise-grade, full-mesh network capabilities. 30 PoPs which enable industry high levels of connectivity through different routing methods promote more efficient scalability and business growth than 300 PoPs lacking in the required hardware and optimization tools.
More recently enterprises need PoPs because they need SaaS applications and connectivity beyond their ethernet plug-ins. Enterprises are rarely stationary and so they should not be restrained by archaic systems when there are alternative models available.
The future is almost instantaneous bandwidth
PoPs are of immense value to businesses and ideally will be strategically located so that, in the future, 100 percent of the world’s business users are within 30 milliseconds of one. For best results, the PoPs will also be located within 1-5 milliseconds from all major cloud service providers. The future is almost instantaneous bandwidth performance and a strong network facilitates this and more.
Today’s SaaS, IaaS and PaaS players may be at the forefront of business innovation today but this does not mean that they will be the winners tomorrow. The status quo is changing, and business systems will need to change with it. To update internal networks, businesses require a facilitator, a system that enables connectivity almost at the touch of a button or a flick of a switch. PoPs enable this connectivity not just within a few branches in the local county or even a dozen branches across the South-East of England for example but on a global scale.
PoPs are necessary for businesses. They are the structural grounding that promotes growth, the hub that ensures high bandwidth across branches and a core part of a system that enables SaaS applications to perform. Without PoPs, businesses risk stagnation. With PoPs, they can embrace change and facilitate a network infrastructure that enables them to thrive and progress.