Data is the lifeblood of modern business, providing valuable business insight and supporting real-time control over critical business processes and operations. Companies are always looking to optimize how the data is used, which is where the edge comes into play. Focused on optimizing data driven capabilities by bringing data collection, processing, and reporting as close to the physical world as possible, edge computing involves a distributed architecture in which client data processes at the periphery of the network.
Edge computing has gained momentum over the past several years, driven by the exponential increase in data and the need to analyze this data closer to the source to gain valuable insights.
Edge technology enables organizations to offer services that go beyond the limitations of traditional enterprise or cloud capabilities. With improved bandwidth, latency, and volume capabilities, edge computing has created a spot for itself across a variety of industries, including stats from those working with the edge today who are predicting a strong future for edge technology.
Today, ZEDEDA, a leader in orchestration for the distributed edge, announced the 2022 Edge Computing Landscape survey. Sponsored by ZEDEDA and conducted with EMC Research following ZEDEDA’s annual Transform conference in August, survey respondents represented a diverse mix of decision-makers and implementers in various verticals, creating detailed insights into the current state of edge computing. The survey consisted of 153 qualified respondents spanning IT, OT and the Line of Business.
The vast majority (74 percent) of survey respondents have an edge project underway today, with most of these projects (31 percent) being in the internal proof of concept phase. A similar number of projects (26 percent) are in the investigation and scoping phase, while a lesser number (23 percent) reported their projects were in full-scale deployment.
The report also found that 59 percent of respondents reported an annual budget of less than $500,000, but 77 percent said they expect to see much more or somewhat more spending for edge projects in 2022. Nearly three-quarters (74 percent) said they expected to see up to a 25 percent spending increase in 2022.
“It makes sense that as more data is processed at the edge of the network, more spending also moves to the edge,” said Said Ouissal, founder and CEO of ZEDEDA. “Companies see edge computing as a foundational enabler for digital transformation. As organizations modernize their OT and IT infrastructure to connect to the cloud previously unconnected devices and systems, edge computing enables these new architectures with flexibility, agility and security.”
The report also highlighted which applications are currently seen as the highest priority when pairing with edge computing technology. The majority (69 percent) of respondents reported that they were considering running AI/ML applications at the edge. Additional applications include remote condition monitoring (53 percent) and cybersecurity (29 percent).
However, when it came to cybersecurity, survey respondents cited this as the most difficult challenge when implementing an edge project. While respondents also recognize a host of other challenges, such as device management, physical deployment and having the necessary personnel skills, the intensity of the security challenge separates it from the others.
Finally, the survey indicated that edge projects are generally led by OT departments or business units that drive the core use case, with IT departments brought in to help determine how to scale the effort. But when asked why their organizations were pursuing an edge strategy, all parts of the organization overwhelmingly responded that it was due to the competitive advantage it offered when turning to digital transformation to rethink their business and provide new services and revenue streams.
“With ongoing COVID-19 and supply chain issues driving the need for more rapid digital transformation, we are seeing companies gain even more confidence in the market and moving innovative projects forward more quickly than they have in the past couple of years,” said Michael Pearl, ZEDEDA’s Vice President of Global Sales. “More edge nodes are being deployed and new data-driven solutions are launching because of the need to move compute closer to the physical world and increase overall resilience to prepare for future events.”
The full report touches upon more edge computing insights. Those who are interested in reading the report can click here.