Report and Forecast for Edge Computing 2018 to 2025
“We expect the first at scale edge compute roll-outs in 2019 and see this accelerating to 2022, when it will hit peak activity,” – Caroline Gabriel
Edge compute is one of the biggest topics in the mobile telecoms world as operators approach deployment of 5G.
Mobile operators need to be chasing MEC (Multi-Access or Mobile Edge Compute) as much as they are 5G. Many 5G revenues streams will rely on MEC being in place. Operators who fail to adopt an early strategy for Edge will struggle.
Edge revenues will start slowly next year, but accelerate rapidly and by 2025, 45% of MNO central offices will also host edge nodes, together with 18% of macrosites and 15% of outdoor microcells or small cells. This forecast demonstrates that if some form of MEC is not adopted soon then there is little hope that MNOs will be able to cope with video and IoT data requirements which customers are expecting from the new 5G era.
The installed base of indoor small cell/edge node units will have reached over 1.8m worldwide, up from 36,000 in 2019, a CAGR of 92%. The installed base of central offices with edge nodes will grow at a CAGR of 57%, all of which will happen by 2025. The biggest growth will be in MEC co-located with indoor small cells. These cells will frequently be combined with compute, storage and analytics capabilities to support smart enterprise and smart home services.
This report not only shows how central MEC is to the thinking of mobile operators, but it explains the choices within MEC, and shows which operators are embracing which MEC architectures, and why. It points to the magnitude of savings which are possible in signaling offload and fronthaul and backhaul.
The report walks the reader through the key barriers to deployment, whether to build or partner, and we see pushback against webscale partners, with operators not wanting to become too dependent upon their current cloud offerings.
Who should buy this report?
Strategic and network planners, MNO management and their vendors, will all benefit from this report, giving them the building blocks to plan new revenues or set a timeline for entering MEC.
Many operators will be looking to hitch their wagon to the most successful architecture for MEC, and favorites are already beginning to emerge. Vendors who get misaligned behind the wrong initiatives will struggle and need to buy this report. The report discusses ETSI’s Multi-access Edge Compute (MEC), Cisco’s OpenFog, CORD from the Open Network Foundation, the Facebook-inspired Telecoms Infra Project (TIP) and AT&T’s Akraino open source project and other approaches.
Author Gabriel states there will be a wide variety of engagement around Edge and the potential for partnering, cost sharing and risk sharing for the shrewd operators. She singles out applications which require very low latency, strong levels of security or local control of data, or deep personalization – all of which indicate a preference for MEC architectures.
About Rethink Technology Research:
Rethink Technology Research is a specialized research and consulting firm with 12 years’ experience in surveying wireless, broadband, over-the-top and quad play operators. This has resulted in a broad research base of over 140 service providers (MNOs, telcos, cable and satellite operators, over-the-top providers) worldwide. These organizations are surveyed on a regular basis about their network infrastructure and business plans and have a relationship of trust with Rethink.
Rethink also has deep relationships with the telecoms ecosystem (tier one device OEMs, vendors, technology developers, integrators, regulators etc..), and is perceived as a thought leader in many areas of the telecoms and media sectors.