Jason Ward, Vice-President and Managing Director, Dell Technologies Ireland

From the rapid growth in connected devices to the shift to ecommerce, organisations are struggling to manage the explosion in the growth of data. Edge computing is the answer to managing this data deluge and gaining business benefits from it. Many technology leaders in Ireland know it is no longer a nice to have, it is essential for businesses looking to innovate with real-time insights in a digital-first era. What’s more, as 5G connectivity comes on stream, those who embrace data at the Edge will reap the rewards on the road to recovery.

There is no doubt that the powerful convergence of cloud, AI and edge technologies will help organisations across Ireland to transform at speed. Paving the way for intelligent cities, homes and real-time services, turbocharged data management and processing power at the edge will drive businesses’ ability to consume more data. There is much to be gained for society as a whole, as well as the businesses that serve them when it comes to ramping up infrastructure at the edge – to seize today’s opportunities and prepare for tomorrow’s world.

As our lives become increasingly connected there is more data to be processed than ever. We’re no longer talking about gigabytes or even terabytes–the new unit of scale is the Zettabyte, equivalent to a billion terabytes. Our growing reliance on this data makes the evolution of core cloud technologies so important. Keeping up and staying ahead of the curve as these demands increase is already business critical – and requires an infrastructural step-up.

Jason Ward, Vice-President and Managing Director, Dell Technologies Ireland
Jason Ward, Vice-President and Managing Director, Dell Technologies Ireland

The “5G Future SME Report”, by Amárach Research, highlights that the failure to invest in Ireland’s 5G network over the rest of the decade could see a significant loss of €12.6 billion in GDP by 2030. With 64% of Irish SMEs also believing effective 5G investment will be critical to Ireland’s economic recovery, it is clear that setting the groundwork now will serve businesses well as they look to grow over the coming months.

To feel the benefits of connected devices that provide real-time AI-powered insights, whether it’s in our factories, cars or shops, we need to embrace high performance computing. Then we can truly benefit from 5G speeds. This means firing-up the edge – and putting automation in the hotseat.       The recent launch of our PowerEdge Server provides a window into the future, revealing how the Zettabyte era will be managed – with automation, security and sustainability at its core. Only with turbocharged compute can the edge meet today and tomorrow’s challenges.

Overcoming data challenges with Automated Edge computing

In 2019, 53% of global data and analytics technology decision makers say they have implemented some form of AI or are in the process of doing so. By harnessing data for key insights, it enables them to respond rapidly to business opportunities, while maximising productivity. As these workloads grow there will be more demand on compute, speed and agility.

Today’s increasingly complex data landscape means many Irish organisations struggle to manage these workloads, applications, and data securely from edge to hybrid cloud. According to Gartner, 75 % of enterprise data will be processed outside a traditional centralised data center or cloud by 2025. So it’s imperative that these issues are addressed swiftly with modernised platforms that support their data-driven goals.

Ultimately, businesses must grow and evolve IT infrastructure to meet these challenges while keeping the lights on. In Ireland, our teams are at the forefront of these challenges. Thanks to their expertise and the work being undertaken in the 5G Edge Labs of Cork and Limerick, we are using the power of 5G and Edge Computing to bring next generation products and services to life .

However, the pandemic threw additional challenges into the mix, fast-tracking our hybrid working futures. It accelerated our reliance on hybrid cloud technologies, while spotlighting the need for greater efficiencies and security.

Cyber risks are obviously something front of mind for everyone right now and over the past year we’ve been reminding customers to increase their cyber security as workforces operated in a remote environment. Our latest Global Data Protection Index has shown that 82% of organisations globally have suffered from a disruptive event. Building proactive resilience and embedding trust into their digital transformation plans with security by design is key. This will help secure interactions, providing the ability to anticipate potential threats.

These challenges can be met with edge solutions that combine the compute power, to combat intense workloads at speed, with inbuilt automation to enhance productivity and seamless management. Apart from keeping businesses in Ireland competitive, getting to grips with the Edge will crucially enhance the sustainability of their data management too.

Edge tech
Edge tech

Sustainability is key to a future-proof edge

When we process data at the Edge, we are actually reducing a lot of power consumption, which is ultimately kinder to the environment – it also requires a smaller cooling footprint. The more we evolve edge computing to meet the needs of businesses and generate better outcomes, the more we accelerate inevitable adoption. The quicker businesses embrace the Edge, the quicker we can minimise resource heavy data transfers between devices and data centers. Dell is committed to, reducing the energy intensity of its entire product portfolio by 80% come 2030 – and by 2020 had already achieved a 69.9% reduction. Edge solutions are core part of this commitment.

What’s more, as Edge Computing lays the groundwork for 5G connectivity, it forms the backbone of a core technology set to help bridge digital divides – connecting those in more remote areas. Paving the way for 5G means preparing for a world in which everyone has access to remote learning, ehealthcare and digital public services. Understanding the bigger picture and human impact from today’s infrastructural decisions should empower businesses as they embark on their digital transformation journey.

Seizing future opportunities from the edge

As we look to the future, Edge technology can help to shape our digital future, driving innovation for business and helping to address societal challenges we face. It is imperative that amid today’s many challenges and opportunities, businesses and organisations in Ireland build their foundations with a long-term view, taking advantage of the immense compute power. There really is no other way to stay on top of the complexities of data-driven future

By Jim O Brien/CEO

CEO and expert in transport and Mobile tech. A fan 20 years, mobile consultant, Nokia Mobile expert, Former Nokia/Microsoft VIP,Multiple forum tech supporter with worldwide top ranking,Working in the background on mobile technology, Weekly radio show, Featured on the RTE consumer show, Cavan TV and on TRT WORLD. Award winning Technology reviewer and blogger. Security and logisitcs Professional.