Market Insight

Fog Computing: Cloud computing for IoT

March 19, 2015  | Subscribers Only

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Over the past two years, the Cloud and the Internet of Things (IoT) have become mainstream technologies that are a poised to reshape the technology landscape, revolutionize business models and change the way enterprises compete with each other and interact with their consumers and value chains. 
The cloud has become a ubiquitous description for on-demand provisioning of data, storage, computing power and services that are touching nearly every consumer and enterprise across the globe.  Cloud computing is the must have segment for every Enterprise now. It provides ease, flexibility and cost efficiency over its conventional predecessor. Cloud has evolved from the traditional service segments of IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS to ‘Everything as a service’ now. IHS forecasts that global enterprise IT spending on cloud based architectures will grow to about $210 billion in 2018.
IoT is a conceptual framework that is about enabling connectivity and embedded intelligence in devices. IoT, which goes beyond machine-to-machine (M2M) communication to include machine-to-people, people-to-machine, machine-to-objects and people-to-objects communications, creates the ability to collect data from a broad range of devices. This data can be accessed via the cloud and analyzed using “big data” techniques. IHS forecasts a 12% annual growth in IoT devices this year.
Enterprises have begun to tap into IoT potential and Cloud has begun its evolution to the next phase. Fog Computing is the next step in cloud evolution. To put it in simple terms, Fog - Closer to ground than Cloud - Computing is an optimized Cloud computing for Internet of Things. ‘Fog computing’ or ‘edge computing’ brings the edge devices into play, fog stretches from the typical Cloud boundaries of edge devices to include edge devices. In Cloud deployment the service is deployed to the edge devices. But when the said cloud network is spread across a large geography the QoS reduces and service latency is reduced. This may vary with location and can pull down the overall QoS of the Service deployed.
In Fog Computing the services are hosted at network edge or end-user devices itself, by hosting services in edge devices fog computing prevents the need to send all data to the central controller from the node and only the required data this prevents network coke and latency and a cost effective system can be designed. Fog computing is ideal for geographically distributed services, low latency and high response time applications. It helps the overall system run in sync and reduces the overall cost of the operations. Especially in Automobile and industrial sectors
IHS forecasts an IoT devices growth of 13% in automotive and 17% industrial sectors this year, this will drive Fog Computing. We would see an evolution of Cloud computing to Fog computing soon as analytics driven IoT is on the rise and enterprise is riding the IoT/Analytics wave to get an edge over competition.
IHS believes that the growth in IoT adoption and deployment requires Geographical distribution, large number of nodes and sensor network, real-time interactions with low latencies support structure which the current cloud will not be able to support. With the industry demand for real time analytics growing cloud services enabled edge devices that support the entire system with real time data is required. Fog Computing will be the solution for enterprise looking at Analytics and IoTs.

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