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Thriving on the Edge: Developing CSP Edge Computing Strategy

Cloud Migration Part 2: Classify your data

By G C Network | August 30, 2018

In my first post of this series, “Cloud migration part one: An overview,” I provided a high-level summary of how enterprises should migrate applications to the cloud. In this installment, the focus is on enterprise data and why your organization may need to review and reclassify its data before moving anything to the cloud. Security evolves with…

Could Budget Sweeps Fix Your Cybersecurity Problem?

By G C Network | July 19, 2018

A recent roundtable discussion in Washington, DC with Federal IT and Cyber leaders focused on the business drivers, challenges and evolving strategies around cybersecurity in government.  After an opening presentation by Jim Quinn, the lead systems engineer for the Continuous Diagnostics and Mitigation program at the Department of Homeland Security, the discussion highlighted the need…

Cloud Migration Part 1: An Overview

By G C Network | July 17, 2018

Cloud Migration Part One: An Overview   Business is all about efficiency and effectiveness.  In today’s world, however, those twin goals almost always lead to cloud migration.  This anecdotal observation is supported by Gartner which sees worldwide public cloud service revenue jumping to over $300B by 2021.   Independent research from Market and Markets echoes…

A Personal Technology for Good Redux: Call for Code

By G C Network | July 12, 2018

In 2013 I had the opportunity to manage a $2M demonstration of how cloud computing could be used to support natural disasters. In that NCOIC Geospatial Community Cloud (GCC) demonstration, multiple regional clouds were managed using a cloud brokerage platform in a simulated response to a massive earthquake. Modeled after the disaster that struck Haiti…

A Path to Hybrid Cloud

By G C Network | May 31, 2018

Cloud computing is now an operational reality across every industry.  Organizations that fail to leverage this economic, operational and technology consumption model are merely consigning themselves to irrelevance.  The rapid acceleration of cloud adoption has now ignited a push for the Hybrid Cloud/Hybrid IT model in which enterprises simultaneously consumes information technology services from private…

Human-Led Collaboration with Machines

By G C Network | May 29, 2018

When charged with managing large and complex efforts, an overarching project management task is risk assessment. It involves documenting the current situation, comparing it to the past, and understanding the odds of the past repeating itself. Since the past may never repeat itself, however, an insightful project manager also imagines the odds of any possible…

Sensomorphic

By G C Network | May 28, 2018

240 million results are returned in 1.06 seconds (as of May 28, 2018) when you search for cloud computing in a Google search. With that much information available, and that many conversations active around the globe; Do we really know what cloud is? Are we confident in knowing what cloud can do? Can we explain why…

Artificial Intelligence and the Project Manager

By G C Network | May 25, 2018

Organizations use teams to create wealth, market share, customer service, competitive advantage, and organizational success. Effective teams accomplish their assigned end goals by engaging in collaboration as a joint learning activity. Enhanced effectiveness is why collaborative tools are so critical to the project manager, and 7 out of 10 IT professionals see collaboration as essential…

Building A Collaborative Team

By G C Network | May 18, 2018

Recently, Harvard Business Review cited some insightful research into team behavior at 15 multinational companies. It found that although these teams tended to be large, virtual, diverse, and composed of highly educated specialists, those same four characteristics made it hard for teams to accomplish their goals. It also showed that complex team members were less…

Welcome the New Project Manager!

By G C Network | May 18, 2018

According to CIO.com, the six traits of highly effective project managers are: Be a strategic business partner who can offer higher-level strategic leadership skills, not just technical management skills, provide significant advantages for organizations of all sizes. Encourage and recognize valuable contributions because a project leader’s effectiveness is strongly impacted by the contributions of others…

Communications Service Providers (CSPs) are facing significant business model challenges. Referred to generally as edge computing, the possibilities introduced by the blending of 5G networks and distributed cloud computing technologies are redefining how CSPs operate, partner, and drive revenue. A new Ericsson Digital whitepaper entitled, “Edge computing and deployment strategies for communication service providers,” addresses these challenges by providing much-needed insight and actionable strategic recommendations.

Written by Ericsson Director Cloud Strategy Execution Carlos Bravo and Solution Marketing Manager Henrik Bäckström, this new work presents a practical roadmap for how the industry should address the expected US$700 billion in 5G-enabled, business-to-business value. It directly answers the question of how operators can maintain relevance in the face of the current massive industry changes. The most enlightening aspect of the paper was the architectural approach to the design and deployment of advanced edge computing solutions. The four critical components of this approach are:

  • Dynamic orchestration and management;
  • Application runtime execution environment;
  • Connectivity; and
  • Distributed cloud infrastructure.

Dynamic orchestration and management emphasize a centralized function that maintains awareness of the network topology and resource availability. This capability maintains consistency between user plane gateway functionality and edge applications.  Consistency is critical to the management of non-telco workloads and VNFs. The application runtime execution environment (RTE) is responsible for hosting all enterprise customer applications in a consistent and well-documented edge computing service environment. Documentation is essential to the development and nurturing of the CSP’s application developer community. Connectivity delivers foundational bandwidth, throughput, mobility, and latency requirements. For edge computing, the application developer may specify these requirements. New traffic routing services that coordinate application server requirements and network functionality are also required. In combination, these capabilities enable the Distributed Cloud Infrastructure, which is composed of global, national, regional, and local cloud data centers. The integration of these data centers with the network is also critical.

Figure 1- An architectural approach to the design and deployment of advanced edge computing solutions

Success with this model requires an overall strategy that differentiates on services delivered. This strategy differs from the more common “services description” approach by its ability to solve industry-specific challenges through the provisioning of easy-to-consume application programming interfaces, or APIs. This “broad tent” approach also requires open collaboration with system integrators, hyperscale cloud service providers, and operations technology vendors. System Integrators (SI) are particularly suited to the task of addressing enterprise pain points related to edge computing solution implementation and the integration of vertical industry offerings. Hyperscale Cloud Providers (HCP) deliver cloud infrastructure and platforms. They also bring with them the application developer ecosystems. Operations Technology (OT) vendors have the Internet of Things (IoT) platforms and applications that deliver the real value at the network edge. Since differentiated services must also be easily accessible to application developers, operators should offer APIs that follow industry de-facto standards or adopt APIs that present a common list of attributes.

Figure 2- CSPs must make their services easily accessible to application developers.

This business model approach redefines the telecommunications value chain. It features operators as the provider of new enterprise-focused offerings. The models also enable many and varied use cases across multiple industry verticals. Operators can also differentiate locally while simultaneously leveraging a global edge computing ecosystem.

Following this recommended path leads typically to service provider focus on one, or a combination, of the following high-level strategies:

  • Full Edge Provider – CSP advances a strong go-to-market (GTM) relationship with the enterprise or the application developer/provider, committing to vertical-specific SLAs
  • Partner Edge Provider – CSP resells HCP and OT vendor industry vertical solutions delivered over the provider’s connectivity services. The focus is on use cases that depend on robust connectivity.
  • Aggregator Edge Provider – CSP partners with a content aggregator through a revenue share aaS model. The aggregator commits to SLAs while the CSP provides edge hardware.
  • Limited Edge Provider – CSP focusses on connectivity that supports vertical industry solutions offered by partner HCP, SI and OT vendors

Edge Computing is drastically changing the service provider role. Success will depend on pursuing a collaborative partner strategy that highlights your telco company’s strengths. All of the recommended strategies, however, demand an understanding and focus on enterprise vertical challenges and solutions.

Ericsson Digital Services offer solutions to modernize, digitalize, and shape new business models for Telco operators globally. Our advanced offerings are designed to help you secure, serve, and grow your business and customer base through innovative customer engagement platforms, automated operations, and programmable networks. If you know what your customers are doing, you will know what to do for your customers. Let us help you leverage edge computing to transform your business so you can evolve, scale and thrive in the digital era. Please visit https://www.ericsson.com/en/digital-services/trending/edge-computing.

Disclaimer: This article was sponsored by Ericsson as part of the Ericsson Ambassador Program.

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