Omdia released a new report on the implications of the shift to edge computing for telecom operators and the best tactics and strategies for capitalising on edge growth.
Commissioned by Vertiv, the report – Telcos and edge computing: opportunity, threat or distraction? – revealed that growth in edge computing could generate new revenue opportunities for operators. Omdia said mobile and wireline operators can build a platform for the development of edge services while saving massively on costs by combining existing cell tower networks with central offices and aggregation points such as edge data centres.
“The growth at the edge opens opportunities for telecom providers to develop new services related to 5G, IoT and other innovative technologies,” said Gary Niederpruem, chief strategy and development officer of Vertiv.
He opined that operators will need partners with international reach, as well as a breadth of solutions and services, to support them on their edge journey.
The Omdia report also revealed that edge growth should open up new areas of competition, with 36% of those surveyed believing that network operators will be most important in the creation of new revenue services from edge. Application developers (30%) and public cloud providers (25%) are also seen as key edge players.
“Communications service providers (CSPs) believe they see a clear opportunity in the emerging edge computing market, but other potential players including public cloud providers and over-the-top (OTT) content players, are equally attracted by the prospect of delivering the edge,” said Julian Bright, senior telecoms analyst, Omdia and author of the research.
He added that the size of share that service providers can expect to capture in the market for edge computing will depend on several factors. These include how successfully they can evolve their networks to support edge computing paradigms and avoid becoming mere connectivity providers.
The Omdia report also addressed the role prefabricated modular data centres (PFM) will likely play in helping telecoms operators deliver future edge infrastructure, with the PFM market forecast to grow from $1.2 billion in 2018 to $4.3 billion in 2023. This projected growth is driven by telcos and the growth of edge computing, as well as overall growth by cloud service providers, the report highlights.