Cloud computing is considered a major driver for disruption in business with the cloud services market growing at a phenomenal pace. In India, this growth can be attributed to the digital boom with the number of internet users expected to reach a staggering 666.4 million by 2023.
The incredible growth of the internet coupled with the usage of advanced technologies like Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML) and the Internet of Things (IoT) has given rise to newer use cases that require low-latency and real-time interactions. Data production is also soaring due to the increasing demand for devices like drones, autonomous vehicles, robots, smart wearables, and smart home gadgets.
To meet the growing demands, the IT infrastructure has to be robust and scalable enough to have a positive impact on the business. Edge Computing is the technology that could be the key to the success of high-speed internet connectivity.
Edge Computing is a part of the distributed computing topology where information processing happens close to the edge or on the device (or application) itself. When compared to a central cloud computing model, what Edge Computing does is that it eliminates the back and forth of data from the device to the data centre and vice-versa. This results in reduced latency, efficient usage of cloud computing resources, reduced costs, improved data privacy, and the ability to function independently without dependence on the network.
Edge Computing provides ‘decentralisation coupled with intelligent computing’, a factor that is impacting industries like banking, insurance, gaming, content creation, digital manufacturing (Industry 4.0), autonomous vehicles, and more. The global Edge Computing market is set to grow from USD 2.8 billion in 2019 to USD 9 billion in 2024. The Edge Computing devices should be capable enough to analyse the information in a few milliseconds and decide whether the data should be processed locally or sent to the cloud. Hence, hardware, software, and the components that complement large data centres located far away and are responsible for processing the data will play a huge role in the Edge Computing market.
The rapid adoption of Edge Computing has opened up new business avenues for Indian services providers who are consolidating their presence across the Edge Computing spectrum – hardware, services, product, and technology. Indian startups like Mozark, Oakter, Neewee.ai, Kaaenaat Pvt. Ltd., Synapptra, Synconext, etc. are capitalizing on this computing wave. These companies are working on providing solutions around smart metres and smart cameras, edge gateways, edge internet, edge platforms, smart sensors and devices, and AI and analytics platform for the edge.
As local processing of data comes at the cost of power, global chipset manufacturers like Arm, NXP, etc. are working on new technologies that can benefit power-hungry consumer electronics, including Edge Computing applications. Arm and NXP have already introduced their respective edge computing systems called ‘Arm Neoverse’ and ‘EdgeVerse’ respectively. Microsoft, Amazon, Dell EMC, IBM, Cisco, and many large-scale enterprises are playing a key role in shaping up the Edge Computing eco-system through a wide range of IoT Edge Computing software offerings.
There is a shift of computing to the edge as more businesses in India look at leveraging the advantages of hyper-converged infrastructure to deal with increasing data gravity. As IoT becomes increasingly pervasive across different industries, 5G will act as the catalyst that will drive IoT, AI, 5G and Edge Computing.
Though there are concerns regarding device interoperability, lack of common standards, and the threat of cyber-security and physical security; Edge Computing will witness an exponential growth in this digital-first world.