The 10 Hottest Networking Products Of 2022

The hottest networking products and services to hit the market in 2022 include SD-WAN and cellular connectivity while harnessing next-generation security and wireless standards. The one thing they all have in common? They can help solution providers address hybrid work requirements.

Wired And Wireless For The Hybrid Age

Addressing hybrid work with cloud-based, flexible IT solutions that can easily scale up and down was the name of the game in 2022, and vendors and startups heeded the call.

Some of the IT sector’s largest networking specialists, including Juniper Networks and Cisco Systems, came armed with cloud-delivered networking offerings that are filling the gaps for businesses looking to enhance security, regardless of an end user or device’s location, and offer a more automated management experience. These offerings are not only helping businesses save time and money, they’re helping companies and solution providers do more with fewer resources and staff.

Hybrid work also demanded brand-new solutions, such as solution provider giant NWN Carousel’s new At-Home Essentials bundle that combines networking and collaboration solutions for home workers. And speaking of bundled offerings, networking startup Prosimo came to the table with its Application eXperience Infrastructure (AXI) platform that integrates networking, application performance, observability and security.

Also topping the list of must-haves this year was SD-WAN, edge and cellular management tools for future-minded businesses that are embracing new forms of connectivity to get the job done.

With many options on the market to choose from this year, here are 10 of the hottest networking products of 2022.

* Aruba Central NetConductor

* Cisco Meraki Cloud Monitoring For Catalyst

* Cradlepoint Cellular Intelligence

* Cytracom ControlOne

* Juniper Networks Secure Edge

* NWN Carousel At-Home Essentials

* Palo Alto Networks' Prisma SD-WAN

* Prosimo AXI Platform

* SonicWave 600 Series Access Points

* TP-Link Omada EAP780

Aruba Central NetConductor

On the edge front, Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company, in March pumped up its Edge Services Platform (ESP) with new management capabilities.

The new Aruba Central NetConductor offers a set of capabilities that lets partners and enterprises define policies, automate network configurations in wired, wireless and WAN infrastructures, and centralize the management of distributed networks, all without worrying about the underlying network construct. Aruba Central, according to the wireless specialist, is at the heart of the company’s flagship network management and analytics platform that sits inside Aruba ESP.

Aruba Central NetConductor will help simplify and automate network policy provisioning using AI, especially as enterprise networks today become larger and more far-flung, the Santa Clara, Calif.-based company said.

Cisco Meraki Cloud Monitoring For Catalyst

Cisco in June unveiled a breakthrough in switch management that combines the simplicity offered by its Meraki brand with the power of its flagship Catalyst portfolio of campus switches, wireless controllers and access points.

Today, customers investing in the popular Cisco Catalyst series, including the 9200/L, 9300/L/X and 9500 switch series, can choose between either Cisco DNA Center or the Meraki dashboard for cloud-based network management. That means IT teams no longer have to choose between buying Meraki or Catalyst hardware, according to the San Jose, Calif.-based company.

Solution providers managing their customers’ environments or the end customers themselves can create a free Meraki dashboard account and on-board their devices. Cisco partners told CRN that the Meraki management option for Catalyst is a “big win.”

Cradlepoint Cellular Intelligence

Businesses are increasingly interested in cellular as a reliable connectivity option as 5G becomes more prevalent. To that end, Cradlepoint in February introduced Cellular Intelligence to arm network administrators with a sophisticated management platform for LTE and 5G wireless WAN deployments.

Cellular Intelligence is part of Cradlepoint’s NetCloud Manager, its cloud management and orchestration platform. Cellular Intelligence is built into Cradlepoint’s portfolio of wireless edge adapters and routers to provide live stats, health dashboards and cellular data breakouts to increase visibility and control of cellular services, as well as real-time SIM management, cellular signal mapping to display reception across driven routes, and software-driven modem functionality to optimize connectivity across modems and carriers. It also features cellular-optimized SD-WAN capabilities to enable traffic-steering policies, application-aware visibility, reporting and controls to monitor and correct performance, and application-based failover control, according to the Boise, Idaho-based company.

Cradlepoint said that Cellular Intelligence enhances the customer, partner and carrier cellular management experience.

Cytracom ControlOne

Solution providers looking for ways to configure and maintain their customers’networks and security postures in the age of hybrid work don’t have to look any further than telecommunications and networking service provider Cytracom’s cloud-based management platform.

Cytracom ControlOne was created for solution providers and integrates network connectivity and enterprise security, which lets them eliminate VPNs and traditional firewalls, enforce zero trust and achieve compliance. The offering includes SD-WAN connectivity, zero trust networking, cloud connectors for seamless connections to Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure, DNS and web content filtering, micro segmentation and SIEM reporting. ControlOne offers features such as Device Posture Check, which allows solution providers to control access to the network by monitoring requirements such as all patches being deployed, disk encryption status, geo-location fencing and more. If these conditions are not continuously met, devices are quarantined and only allowed to communicate with specified destinations until the issue can be safely remediated, the Allen, Texas-based company said.

Introduced in March, Cytracom ControlOne is available exclusively to partners and can be set up in minutes.

Juniper Networks Secure Edge

Juniper Networks in February introduced Juniper Secure Edge, a cloud-delivered security service that offers Firewall-as-a-Service (FWaaS) as a single-stack software architecture that lets businesses, all the way from the enterprise to the midmarket and smaller, transition to SASE and scale their security profiles as they grow.

Secure Edge arms users with reliable and secure access to their applications and security resources, including Dynamic Zero Trust segmentation. The offering lets companies manage and maintain their security policies from one place and grants users secure access, regardless of if they are working from the office, at home or on the road, according to Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Juniper Networks.

Available to channel partners and their end customers, the service is a different delivery vehicle for all of the same threat protection and firewalling features that customers have come to expect from the Juniper SRX series. But because it’s entirely cloud-managed—from Juniper Security Director Cloud—Juniper Secure Edge will help businesses manage their security environments across a hybrid workforce, the company said.

NWN Carousel At-Home Essentials

Cloud communications solution provider NWN Carousel went all in addressing hybrid work needs this year and introduced a couple of new, bundled offerings in the process.

The NWN Carousel At-Home Essentials kit offers business-grade connectivity—including bandwidth and Cisco Meraki wireless access points—as well as visual collaboration tools, which include high-resolution desktop cameras, face lighting, and advanced speakers, microphones and headsets. The kit also includes end-user service desk support. Users have a choice between third-party collaboration device vendor products, including Cisco Webex and Poly hardware, for video meetings. The kit can integrate with existing offerings customers may already have in their environments like Microsoft Teams, according to the Boston-based company.

NWN Carousel is selling these solutions through its own channel partners and taking the kits directly to its thousands of end customers via a flexible, consumption-based selling model, the company told CRN in April.

Palo Alto Networks Prisma SD-WAN

Palo Alto Networks is coming to market with its SASE and WAN edge offering, Prisma SD-WAN, that empowers enterprises to set application-defined SD-WAN policies and provides a secure, cloud-delivered edge computing offering.

Cloud-delivered Prisma SD-WAN implements app-defined, autonomous SD-WAN to help customers connect and secure edge sites, data centers and large campus sites without increasing cost and complexity, according to the Santa Clara, Calif.-based company. The offering also employs AIOps and machine learning methodologies to automate network operations while ensuring security remains at the forefront.

Prosimo AXI Platform

For autonomous multi-cloud networking, networking startup Prosimo offers its

Application eXperience Infrastructure (AXI) platform that integrates networking, application performance, observability and security into one approach. The idea behind the platform is to help modernize and simplify application delivery and experience across multi-cloud environments.

The San Jose, Calif.-based startup has partnered with Amazon Web Services to deliver new cloud networking capabilities that simplify multi-cloud and hybrid architectures by combining the Prosimo AXI platform with AWS Cloud WAN so that customers can build an elastic and scalable transit for cross-region connectivity.

SonicWall SonicWave 600 Series Access Points

SonicWall released a new access point product line for complex, multi-device SMB environments that use the 802.11ax standard and features the improved security of WPA3 encryption.

Unveiled in August, the new 600 Series includes capabilities of SonicWall‘s other wireless tools such as Wireless Network Manager, WiFi Planner and the SonicExpress mobile app. Security was at the forefront when the 600 series was being developed and because SonicWall takes a holistic view of security, its products integrate with each other and give partners the ability to offer one-stop wireless and security shopping for their customers. The new access points can be paired with firewalls, the San Jose, Calif.-based company said.

TP-Link Omada EAP780

Fresh off the presses, TP-Link in November lifted the curtain on its brand-new Omada EAP780, a tri-band Wi-Fi 7 access point with up to 22-Gbps Wi-Fi 7 and two 10G ports.

The new access point is powered by the latest Wi-Fi 7 technology, as well as the now-open 6GHz band, wider 320MHz bandwidth and Multi-Link Operation (MLO) technology, the Shenzhen, China-based company said. The access point promises higher throughput, lower latency and less interference in settings such as auditoriums, large meeting rooms or hotels with numerous devices. TP-Link said that Omada EAP780 is geared toward SMBs and enterprise end users.

The EAP780 is expected to become generally available in early 2023.