Is Edge Computing Really Worth It?

Edge computing is actively remodeling IT and business computing. If you want to have a more comprehensive perspective on what it is, how it works, and its influence on business, consider reading this. 

What is Edge Computing?

Edge computing has sprung as a viable and essential architecture that supports distributed computing power to deploy storage resources close to the data source, which ideally is located in the same physical location. In simple terms, it collects, filters, processes, and analyzes data near the data source or network edge. It became relevant because Cox Edge computing services provide an effective solution for the rising network issues linked with moving the bulk of data that people consume. 

Its benefits include:

  • Improved Latency: Latency is the time needed to send data from one point to another on a network. Although communication usually takes place at a faster rate, long distances can delay data movement. Since edge computing uses a system that immediately processes the data within the same area where the data comes from, there will be less delay in processing.
  • Reduced WAN Bandwidth: Bandwidth refers to the amount of data a network can carry over time. This is measured in bits per second. All networks have limited bandwidth, and it’s even less for wireless communication. This means that there is only a limited amount of data permissible to communicate across the network. This is not an issue with decentralized edge computing because the data is close to its data source to be processed.
  • Transmission Costs: Since edge computing is decentralized, the data doesn’t need to be transmitted to the computing system to be processed. There will also be no need for more devices to transmit the data to the central computing network.
  • Less Congestion: The internet is an amalgam of networks. It evolved to offer multi-purpose data exchanges that involve many computing tasks, like basic streaming and file exchanges.

Which Industries Can Benefit From Edge Computing? 

ESince these industries don’t have the means or it’s impractical for them to transport data into a centralized location, they can benefit from the edge computing techniques. 

  • Manufacturing

This industry uses edge computing to monitor manufacturing activities, enabling real-time analytics and machine learning to detect errors in production and improve manufacturing quality products. Edge computing also supports environmental sensors installed throughout the manufacturing plant to monitor how each product is assembled and stored. 

  • Farming

Imagine a business that grows crops indoors without any sunlight or soil. Of course, the crop’s growth process will be reduced significantly. Using edge computing, sensors can be installed to track the crops’ water use, nutrient density, and even the estimated time of harvest. Once data is collected, the effects of different environmental factors are analyzed to improve the algorithm for growing crops. 

  • Network Optimization

Edge computing techniques can help optimize network performance by measuring users’ performance across the web, then employing analytics to know the most steady, low latency network path to solve user traffic.

  • Healthcare

The healthcare system can benefit from edge computing in the expansion of the volume of patient data. This huge amount of data can be processed via automation so that doctors can take immediate action to help their patients.

  • Transportation

This can be applied in autonomous vehicles that produce data by gathering information about speed, location, vehicle condition, traffic, and road conditions. Edge computing technique, like onboard computing, is required because the data needs to be analyzed immediately while the vehicle is moving. 

  • Retail

Retail businesses need edge computing because they accumulate data from stock tracking, sales data, and surveillance. Edge computing can help evaluate a wide array of data to identify potential business opportunities. This could predict sales, optimize vendor ordering, and so on. 

What are the disadvantages of edge computing?

  • Limited capacity: Edge computing requires a definitive scale to be deployed because it only serves a specific purpose
  • Connectivity: Edge computing still requires a minimum level of connectivity. That’s why it’s important to design an edge deployment that handles an erratic connection.
  • Data lifecycles: Most data involved in real-time analytics isn’t retained for a long time. A certain business must choose what data to discard once the analyses are complete. 
  • Security: The data retained from these devices are insecure, so there’s a need for proper device management to avoid hacking. 

Final Thoughts

Data is the essence of modern business. They provide relevant insights into the processes and operations of the company. Edge computing can help in analyzing the virtual flood of data that your businesses have. So, to answer the question, is edge computing worth it? It depends on the industry or the type of business that will use it. You may benefit from edge computing as it moves a portion of the storage and computes data outside the central data center. Issues like congestion, latency, and transmission costs are also reduced.

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