From edge to cloud, why orchestration and management are critical for success (2023 Prediction #2)
As industries continue to expand how they instrument physical locations through IoT and operational technology (OT) to provide richer data insight into their operations, it became apparent that latency and connectivity from the edge of an organization to the cloud can cause data processing inefficiencies. This drove the need for a degree of computing capability to reside not in the cloud but near where data is generated to reduce, if not eliminate, any data processing lag delaying an organization's ability to derive insight from data. This is the driving force behind the growth of edge computing.
However, despite the awareness of edge computing amongst CxOs growing in recent years, there is still a lack of clarity on the different forms of edge and how to manage and orchestrate them effectively from an IT operational perspective. PAC considers examples of edge computing to span sensors, devices, facilities/branches, cloud (as in localizing cloud compute at an edge), and hybrid (a mix of traditional IT at the edge and the cloud). Despite the potential benefits of performing complex compute activities, leveraging artificial intelligence (AI), for example, at the edge of an organization, some downsides can scale exponentially if not operationally planned for upfront.
The “in-the-field” nature of edge computing means it has some challenging aspects to manage, for example, physical accessibility, network connectivity and bandwidth, scale, latency, control and maintenance, data accumulation, and security. As organizations continue to adopt continuous integration (CI) and delivery (CD) to deploy containerized applications across their organizations, including the edge, CIOs must create and adopt an edge computing orchestration and management strategy in 2023. Not doing so will only create a new generation of complexity at a scale CIOs are unlikely to be prepared for. PAC recommends that addressing this situation at pace and scale will require the support of service providers and tools vendors working in partnership with CIOs and their IT functions.
This blog is part of a series of PAC's 2023 Top 10 predictions