Intelligent Edge - the smart Internet of Things

Intelligent Edge - the smart Internet of Things

The Intelligent Edge will be the defining theme in the coming decade: smart cities, vehicles, factories - wherever things are connected in the Internet of Things, the Intelligent Edge will emerge and offer huge innovation potential.

Application opportunities are emerging everywhere: factory floor, building, campus, city, home, wind farm, power plant, on land, at sea or in the air. The Edge is intelligent because of technologies that enable intelligence, networking, computing power and control functions. And, most importantly, it enables analytics that were previously only available to users locally or in a data center in the cloud.

The Intelligent Edge is an ever-growing number of networked systems and devices that collect and analyze data - close to users, data, or both. Users get real-time insights and capabilities delivered by fast-responding and context-aware applications.

Connect, Compute, Control - three pillars of the Intelligent Edge

What the Intelligent Edge can really do becomes clear when looking at the three essential "Cs":

  • Connect: If devices, people or things connect to each other via networks, then new data sources and data volumes are created from this data exchange.

  • Compute: Systems then process this data, provide applications and deliver comprehensive information about the networked things, devices and the respective environment.

  • Control: The computed information forms the basis for measures and for controlling devices and things in the edge. In addition, further control measures can be taken for stores or companies that are connected to the Edge.

A small example to illustrate this: In a retail store, refrigerated drinks and digital price displays on the shelf are connected in a network. This means the retailer always has an overview of its inventory and can see how long it will take for a drink to sell. This information, combined with data on the outside temperature and sales at other locations, can now be used to adjust and control beverage prices in real time. In this IoT application, beverages and price displays take on the role of "things" connected to the network. With the help of this connectivity, the retailer can successively increase its sales and create a new customer experience in parallel.

This technology approach can be used to create further new intelligent customer experiences - for example, via location services and connected apps: In office buildings, on a campus area, or in a shopping center. There, for example, the smartphone then shows the customer the way to the desired product, to special offers, or to the restrooms.


Growing trend toward distributed computing - the edge categories

Higher video resolution, new formats, growing bandwidth and the need for better security and reliability are presenting the communications industry with data transmission challenges in this context. Telecom providers are therefore bringing more and more advanced computing and control systems into businesses and homes. These Intelligent Edges increase the competitiveness of services and improve the customer experience.

The intelligence in the various edge applications is becoming more sophisticated almost daily, thanks to new industry standards and software stacks that were previously only found in the traditional data center. This trend toward distributed computing is amplified to provide better services at the point of use, bypassing the limitations of remote data centers or clouds in this way.

Intelligent Edges can be divided into three categories: Operational Technology (OT) Edge, IoT Edge and Information Technology (IT) Edge.

  • An OT edge has intelligence and control capabilities; however, connectivity and computing power are quite limited (power plants / offshore oil platforms).

  • IT Edges are often in the telecommunications and data communications industries; distributed data transfer and processing or distributed computing for multiple sites (branch offices, campuses, etc.) run over them.

  • IoT edge is a multi-level combination of OT edge and IT edge: "things" are connected to sensors for data collection as well as actuators that control them either wired or wirelessly. These sensors and actuators are in turn connected to gateways, switches and data acquisition systems. They are joined by IT systems at the edge and, in the final stage, the remote data center or cloud.


Advantages of the Intelligent Edge

The three pillars already mentioned - Connect, Compute and Control - all contribute significantly to edge intelligence. The most important key to success here is optimized data processing: Using edge data, immediate insights can be generated at a fairly low cost. Edge computing becomes more efficient when enterprise-class computing, storage and management systems are moved from the data center to the edge. This shift holds numerous benefits for enterprises:

  • Lower latency

  • Reduced bandwidth

  • Lower costs

  • Reduced security risks

  • Higher technical reliability

  • International compliance


Conclusion: New, more efficient business models with the Intelligent Edge

The possibilities offered by Intelligent Edge technologies are fascinating: they can increase efficiency in companies enormously. That's because instead of having to send data to a data center or third-party vendor, analytics are performed at the site where the data is generated. Not only does this allow these analyses to be performed more quickly; it also reduces the likelihood of data being intercepted or otherwise corrupted. Organizations can operate much more autonomously and no longer rely on potentially faulty network connections for their operations. Upgrading to Intelligent Edge technologies yields revenue increases, cost savings and, not least, higher customer satisfaction fairly quickly.

veröffentlicht am : 2021-02-23 14:45