At the company’s Mind & Machine 2017 event here, GE Digital CEO Bill Ruh said that for the industrial world, edge computing is critical because assets like rigs, plants, and critical infrastructure all reside at the edge of the network. “They need to be connected to make real-time safety and productivity decisions,” Ruh said.
In fact, the company is so bullish on the edge that Ruh said it believes that “there will be more processing at the edge than in the cloud over time.” This statement is, of course, backed by a recent study from Gartner that estimates that 75 percent of enterprise data will be created and processed outside the data center or cloud by 2022.
Nevertheless, Ruh’s statement is notable considering Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella made an appearance at the event’s opening keynote session to tout Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform and its partnership with Predix. Azure is Predix’s preferred cloud partner with general availability in North America beginning Nov. 30, and expanding globally in 2018.
GE Digital said that it will expand its capabilities at the edge so that customers can run analytics as close to the source of data as possible without having to worry about latency or limited connectivity. The company’s Edge Manager will support up to 200,000 connected devices from a single console, and Predix Machine will enable microservice-based applications to run at the edge using either a virtualized data center infrastructure or server-class hardware from GE or one of its partners. Complex event processing at the edge is also set to be included beginning next year.
Ruh also revealed some interesting metrics around Predix. He said the platform has more than 1,000 customers and more than 960 ecosystem partners. Because of Predix’s inroads in the energy field, Ruh said that more than 10 percent of the world’s power generation is run through the Predix platform. “We are hitting our stride,” he noted.
Ruh also said that Predix-powered orders have grown more than 100 percent year-over-year, and the platform is now operating in more than 85 countries.
GE Digital CEO Bill Ruh talks about Predix’s progress at the company’s Mind & Machines 2017 conference.