Edge processing has been around for some time now, but why has it become more relevant right now? What has changed in the landscape? This question is becoming more and more common.
According to Gartner, “By 2024, more than 60% of consumer-generated data will be created and processed outside the data center or a single cloud environment.” This means that data is not only being generated by people anymore, but also by devices and processes. And with that, the amount of data that is being generated cannot feasibly be sent back to the cloud or a data center to be processed.
There is simply too much.
This is where the intelligent edge comes in. You want that computing process to be closer to where your data is actually generated. And one huge benefit of intelligent edge — across all industries — is reduced latency because you don’t have to move data from where it’s generated.
What can the intelligent edge be used for?
The use cases of intelligent edge span across nearly all industries. For example, on the manufacturing floor, you might have someone individually inspect every product that comes off your conveyor belt. With intelligent edge, you can use computer vision models to find defects in products — and your people can use their talents and experience elsewhere to provide even higher value.
Retail is also a great use case for the intelligent edge for anomaly detections at the point of sale, inventory management, supply chain logistics and more.
Likewise, healthcare organizations can reap the benefits, experiencing operational efficiencies, analyzing imaging, etc.
We’ve seen successes in other industries as well, including energy, logistics, hospitality, agriculture, mining and more.
The high-level architecture of intelligent edge
So, how does the intelligent edge work?
First, all your data is ingested into the Edge Gateway where the data is processed. From the Edge Gateway, you can integrate with other systems as well (i.e., signal tower, PLC, ERP or CRM systems). Then you’re sending only relevant, processed data back to the cloud, which reduces the impact on your network. At that point, you can process the data further, visualize it, store it or archive it.
The cloud also helps you scale these solutions. Your Edge Gateway could be deployed across hundreds of locations. How do you manage that? This is where scalability of the cloud comes: Running a well architected solution in the cloud and the edge ensures security, quick access to data, information and allows you to manage, monitor and change your workloads as your business changes.