How Can Edge Computing and 5G Make it Work?

A data center for edge computing and 5G

5G connectivity is budding throughout the world as the next generation of wireless is becoming more and more a part of our lives. While you may be ready for record-breaking download speeds and greater capabilities, 5G will need some help to deliver on the promises networks intend to keep. In part, that help will come from edge computing.

“The 5G air interface is so low latency that operators are able to look at it almost like a wire,” said the CTO of Inseego, Dan Picker. “Suddenly, it makes a difference to put compute at the 5G edge rather than in the cloud. 5G has made it the right time to build the compute resources at the edge.”

The idea of edge computing is to deliver computers and data closer and closer to where consumers use their devices and networks. This results in better download speeds and fewer bandwidth usages. Edge computing allows for improved machine learning and stronger networks that can survive disruptions without hindering user experience or connectivity. Overall, edge computing helps networks thrive and survive. The concept and the practice are interlocked with 5G and vice versa; however, the business models between these emerging technologies are still fumbling to figure out how each will coexist.

Patrick Lopez, the founder of Core Analysis, a firm involved in the fields of wireless and tech acknowledges the inability of today’s markets to work together at this moment stating, “The only way this works is if operators keep and increase their enterprise customers.” One of the biggest reasons for this is because of the shift from only relying on cloud computing and the need to develop systems rapidly that work for edge and 5G, both of which are still both young in their life cycles. But through scaling, entities are preparing to make the necessary adjustments and provide the necessary edge solutions for customers. This, however, leads to more questions.

How is revenue to be distributed? What will be offered within these services and what is needed to deliver them properly? Can these operators provide services on time as edge and 5G continue to grow at an impressive pace? How will the ability to hyperscale these services affect smaller enterprises as opposed to larger ones?

These questions and more will need to be answered by the industry, but determining where edge computing will be available might be the biggest one. “When you look at the cellular space, most operators are starting to build these edge clouds, which they call their MEC,” said Picker. These edge clouds and other devices will also play a major role in connecting by utilizing software. Some solutions can even connect to artificial intelligence (AI) to remedy problems while reducing the amount of bandwidth used. In addition to software, creative infrastructure usage and cell tower deployment from companies such as American Tower will also be necessary if edge computing, and as a result, 5G in its truest form will be distributed in an effective manner. Connecting MECs to towers will connect networks to other networks, however, these techniques are still not ready for commercial use. Either way, this complex situation will need a result sooner rather than later as nationwide networks continue to expand throughout the United States and the world.

Source: Fierce Wireless