Posts Tagged ‘Big Data’

Edge Analytics – What, How, Where?

Internet of Things (IoT) is too big for traditional data processing solutions.  Edge analytics may be the key to exploiting the oceans of data it generates. Identifying critical data sets and processing them close to source will be critical to the success of new services, and for speed and compliance it is likely that a lot of this analysis will take place in edge data centers.

 

Patrick van der Wilt, Commercial Director, EvoSwitch

 

Here Comes the Flood

According to Gartner, IoT will include 26 billion devices by 2020. Organisations in virtually every industry are using these devices to drive higher levels of efficiency, reduce costs, generate new revenue, and understand customers at more granular levels. However, not all of these organisations are prepared to deal with the deluge of data they will bring. The huge amount of data streaming from IoT could easily saturate datacenter networks, storage and processing capacity.

Enter Edge Analytics. An increasingly popular way of addressing these challenges is to put automated, intelligent analytics at the edge — near where the data is generated — to reduce the amount of data and networking communications overhead. Data that falls within normal parameters would be ignored or routed to lower cost storage for archival and regulatory reasons, while that which falls outside the norm could trigger an alert and be sent to a primary data platform for further analysis.

 

Islands of Data

A section of this compute, storage and analysis could take place in the Cloud – for instance via specialist machine data analytics firms like Splunk or Sumo Logic.  But for a lot of organisations the data will need to be processed closer to source (and faster) in specialist edge data centers such as EvoSwitch facilities. This applies in particular where companies don’t want any of the compliance headaches of manipulating private customer data in the cloud.

 

The Prize on the Horizon

Enterprises who do not have a clear Big Data strategy by now need to get a move on. Recent research indicates that the majority of Fortune 1000 firms now have at least one instance of big data in production – twice as many as in 2013 – and over half are creating new senior data-specific roles, in particular that of Chief Data Officer.

At the service provider end the prize is even bigger. Cisco claim that in what they call the ‘Internet of Everything’ there is $4.6 trillion of ‘value at stake’. Whether or not you would go that far, the prize for the winning data processing solution will be huge, and all the leading players are forging ahead with their offerings. SAP are evolving their HANA database solution; Cisco has bought Cologne-based edge analytics specialist Parstream; Dell continue to work with Intel on their IoT Labs and IoT Gateway servers, and IBM and HP are both investing heavily.

The greatest prize will undoubtedly be in the interoperation of IoT networks; where one dataset meets another and they generate something new and valuable.  Today there are plenty of networks of data, but they don’t talk to each other.  Edge analytics -whether they take place in edge data centers or in the cloud – will be the key to realizing this value.

 

Further Reading

 

451 Research: Why IoT is Driving Analytics to the Edge of the Network– a short overview article by Jason Stamper of 451 Research

Information Week: Edge Analytics An Antidote To IoT Data Deluge

Information Week: Big Data Goes Mainstream: What Now?

 

EvoSwitch Commercial Director Patrick van der Wilt has more than 13 years of commercial experience in the data center market, having worked with TelecityGroup and IO.  The success of his sales and marketing strategies is dependent on profound market understanding and insights into the implications of the latest commercial trends. View full bio

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The Paradigm Shift 5G Will Bring

This Blogpost was written by Eric Boonstra, MD of EvoSwitch

 

Although it is still a few years away, the mobile telecommunications industry is already abuzz with plans and visions for a 5G world. Slowly a picture is starting to emerge that promises to have deep impact on business models and the technologies that drive them. Many expect it to become the enabler of a truly connected world, of people and specifically, ‘things’.

 

The Internet of Things Enabler

As is often the case with new standards still in development, 5G means different things based on who you ask. Mobile operators, producers of hand sets, governments all have different interpretations. Sticking to specifics, these are some of the goals of 5G that are broadly supported and will have a big impact, especially on the Internet of Things (IoT):

 

Increased data volume

Low latency

Faster data transfer speeds

More devices per square kilometer

Energy efficiency

 

When studying the above aspects of what 5G will bring, it’s clear to see that IoT has been at the center of the development. To start, 5G will enable file transfers that are 1,000 times bigger than under current 4G, without performance impact. Consider that currently, an Airbus A350 comes equipped with close to 6,000 sensors across its body and wings, generating a staggering 2.5Tb of data each day of flight. Its successor in the same A350 model due for commercial service in 2020 will have three times more sensors collecting data.

5G will reduce latency, mostly in the connection between the endpoint device and the base station it is connected to. This will enable (near) real time control of applications on the same network, or elsewhere connected via the Internet.

Faster data transfers have always be the most noteable improvement with each generation of mobile communications. For 5G, it will mean 1-10Gbps (topping out at an incredible 20Gbps) connections to endpoint devices in the field, more speed than most current fixed broadband Internet offers.

The amount of devices that can concurrently communicate with base stations is a very important feature of 5G, important for IoT applications. Some estimates come to one million devices per square kilometer. Imagine the impact on logistics, where now packages are scanned at intermittent hops in the delivery process, to packages that communicate independently about their exact location.

To close off the list, improved energy efficiency will mean an improved action radius for applications, giving applications bigger autonomy between charges.

The impact will be felt in all sectors of IT. Logistics, Robotics, Big Data, Business Intelligence, immediately come to mind and will all have an enormous opportunity to prepare for in the coming years. Ubiquitous broadband connectivity for millions of mobile endpoints, starting in major cities, transport hubs and highways and gradually finding its way to all corners of a truly interconnected economy.

 

Impact On Data Centers

This impact will most certainly be felt in the data center industry, seen as a primary benefactor of this oncoming tidal wave of data. To be sure, a big chunk will go straight to big public clouds, interconnected at Edge data centers like EvoSwitch. But for companies to analyze, and take real time decisions, many organizations will look to hybrid cloud deployments at those same data centers to compute and store part of the data at least in a secure, scalable and compliant fashion.

“We believe that data center operators that provide interconnected, scalable, compliant and secure environments for organizations to build and host their Hybrid IT environments, stand to gain from the opportunity that is the Internet of Things,” agrees Andy Lawrence, Research Vice President – Data Center Technologies & Eco-Efficient IT at 451 Research and writer of ‘5G: Innovation, disruption and opportunity ahead’.

Finally, the term ‘mobile endpoint’ seems apt. In a human-driven mobile world that focuses mostly on pulling data, i.e. downloading content to a smart phone or tablet, the term has evolved from mobile phone to handheld device and we are now at ‘endpoint device’, but it still puts human control central. Under 5G, we will talk more of mobile endpoints, because SIM cards will appear everywhere and quickly overtake us as the prominent users. Who controls those SIMs, and whether they will be reprogrammable or not, will also play an important part in the enablement of the Internet of Things in the years to come.

 

Eric Boonstra, MD EvoSwitch

Download the complimentary 451 Research report here.

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