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The time is now: Edge datacentres come of age

  • 3 mths ago

The onset of the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic led to a surge in demand for edge datacentre capacity in some vertical markets, while also having a chilling effect on the adoption and deployment rates of distributed computing setups in others.

As enterprises across the world pivoted towards remote working during the early days of the pandemic, having a higher number of smaller data processing hubs located closer to users made a lot of sense.

These setups meant enterprises could provide their remote employees with low-latency connections to business applications, with (hopefully) little to no perceptible difference in performance when compared to using those same apps in the office.

It is a concept the music and movie streaming services embraced years before the pandemic struck by leaning on content delivery networks (CDNs) and points of presence (PoP) to host their content, rather than relying on huge, centralised datacentres in remote locations to serve up their content to users.

Having this content close to users reduces the risk of buffering and cuts down on loading times for streaming platforms, making their apps more responsive while also providing them with valuable, geographic-led usage data about who is consuming their content.

In the increasingly competitive world of streaming platforms, any performance issues or user experience blips that stop consumers getting access to the content they want in a timely way can affect the ability of these companies to recruit new users and retain existing ones.

Edge investments on hold

Beyond these use cases, wider adoption of edge datacentres and computing environments has taken a little bit longer than expected, with the pandemic forcing some firms to put their edge plans on ice, according to Roy Illsley, chief analyst at IT market watcher Omdia.

In a research project last year about edge computing, Omdia found that edge investments had been put on hold due to Covid-19.

Continue reading: https://www.computerweekly.com/feature/The-time-is-now-Edge-datacentres-come-of-age

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