The merging of private 5G, IoT and edge computing technologies is accelerating, new study finds

Author: David Grady

Building an effective edge computing capability has become a top priority for the majority of companies, according to new research from Enterprise Strategy Group, (ESG), and private 5G networks will play a critical or significant role in a company’s ability to move beyond “digital transformation” toward true “business transformation.”

Sixty-four percent of IT and business leaders surveyed in the new ESG report said that learning to leverage edge computing is a “top 5” priority, and 71 percent reported that 5G would play a “critical” or “significant” impact on their ability to do so.

The ESG report—“Going Beyond Digital Transformation”—highlights how edge computing initiatives have become a top ten priority for almost every organization (94%) surveyed and that IoT deployments are on the rise, reflecting the growing recognition of the need for data-driven business intelligence capabilities.

“Organizations,” the Verizon Business-commissioned ESG report finds, “need to ensure that investments in the IoT devices that generate data—and the edge computing infrastructure needed to analyze the data—are supported by the underlying network. This means ensuring that reliable, secure, and scalable wireless connectivity becomes part of a larger hybrid network that complements and builds on top of previous infrastructure investments.”

The ESG report found that operational efficiency, improving the customer experience, and developing “new data-centric products and services” are the top three goals of the majority of company’s ongoing IT transformation efforts. Being able to extract actionable insights in near real-time from the massive amount of data a company creates will be key to achieving these goals, the report states.

“As organizations deploy massive numbers of IoT devices, IP cameras, autonomous vehicles and artificial-intelligence-driven applications, they will likely find it challenging to collect, analyze, and act on the huge amount of data these devices yield. What’s becoming evident as organizations strive to be even more ‘data-driven’ is the need for a network design that provides the high speed, low latency, and edge computing power needed for real and near-real time decision-making and action.”

Private networks featuring 4G/LTE and 5G connectivity, coupled with mobile edge computing, “will be key components of networks at truly ‘data-driven’ organizations,” according to the ESG report.

Further, the ESG research found:

  • Quality control/analytics is the number one 5G mobile edge computing use case in the manufacturing, health care and retail industries, while maintaining operational continuity is a priority use case in the business and financial services industries and in construction/engineering.
  • IT and business leaders expect telecommunications providers to offer not just robust wireless connectivity for devices deployed in remote areas but also that the connectivity be highly secure.
  • Only five percent of surveyed companies say they have no IoT initiatives planned for the foreseeable future.

“What’s so compelling about the convergence of powerful and pervasive network connectivity, IoT and edge computing is that it allows businesses to not just achieve their current goals, but to imagine and realize a whole new set of strategic objectives,” said Danny Johnson, Director of Product Marketing for 5G, MEC and, IoT at Verizon Business.

Read the full report, Going Beyond Digital Transformation, and learn how Verizon helps companies accelerate their business transformation efforts to achieve Enterprise Intelligence.

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