No wonder there’s so much buzz about the network edge. According to a new survey by research firm MachNation, Internet of Things (IoT) edge revenue will increase 81 percent next year. North America (with 31 percent of revenue) and Europe (with 35 percent) will see the biggest jumps. The company expects the majority of the increase in the IoT edge to come from industrial IoT, automotive, transportation, and smart cities.
MachNation evaluated 16 IoT edge vendors for its report, including Adlink, Amazon, Cisco, Dell, FogHorn, Huawei, Microsoft, SAP, and Siemens. The company defines these IoT edge vendors as companies with platforms that offer a distributed technology and processing architecture along with some analytics near the place where data is generated, or the edge.
According to MachNation CTO and head analyst Dima Tokar, many hardware vendors already have IoT solutions but the real complexity of IoT occurs at the edge and 90 percent of that is related to the software, not the hardware.
Although there are some companies that claim to have an end-to-end approach, most enterprises are still having to put their IoT edge solutions together. And one of the biggest issues is how to transmit the data because there is currently no standard format for doing so.
But there are several standards groups working on formal standards for multi-access edge computing (MEC). In July the ETSI multi-access edge computing industry specification group (MEC ISG) released its first package of standardized application programming interfaces (APIs) for MEC. Plus ETSI in September partnered with the OpenFog Consortium to create global standards for fog-enabled MEC technologies including 5G, IoT, and other data-dense applications.
Consolidation Will Come
MachNation researched 16 companies in this report and in an interview with SDxCentral, Steve Hilton, MachNation co-founder and president, said that it’s likely there will be more consolidation in this area. 2016 was a particularly big year for IoT consolidation with companies like Verizon and GE making many notable purchases.