The IT world never stops evolving. Now that Cloud Computing is fairly mainstream, look for “Fog Computing” to take center stage.
We’re all really familiar with “the cloud” right? So what’s next?
Well, there’s something on the horizon that has the ability to make cloud computing better and faster, and bring a whole new set of technologies and businesses to our world: Fog Computing. Interest in this technology is being driven by emerging technologies which utilize automation and analytics. From our vantage point as seasoned IT Pros, Fog Computing does indeed seem poised to become the next big thing in the world of information technology services.
But what is it? How can your business use it? How does it differ from cloud computing? In this introductory article, we’ll try to cover some of the basics. And as always, if you’d like to talk to an IT Pro about how you can make this technology work better for your business, just reach out. We’d love to chat with you!
What is Fog Computing?
According to the Wikipedia page, Fog Computing is “an architecture that uses edge devices to carry out a substantial amount of computation, storage, communication locally and routed over the internet backbone, and most definitively has input and output from the physical world, known as transduction.” (Source)
How is it different from Cloud Computing?
In a nutshell, the Cloud of today isn’t designed to handle the massive amount of data IoT technologies generate. Fog Computing not only supports automation, but it also enables instant analysis and response to time-sensitive data. It provides opportunities for increased business network security, as well as expanded business services. Services are hosted at the network edge or even on end devices such as set-top-boxes or access points. By moving services to the edge of the network, Fog reduces service latency, and improves Quality of Service (QoS), resulting in a superior user experience.
Its’ distinguishing characteristics are:
- Proximity to end-users
- Dense geographical distribution
- Support for mobility; overcomes network bandwidth and availability issues
- Instant response to selected IoT data
Making things better and faster.
By moving parts of the Cloud closer to end users at the edge of the network, Fog Computing will make the Cloud better and faster. Select Cloud services will be freed from dependence on large data centers.
With the Internet of Things (IoT) generating massive amounts of data and requiring computing power and storage, having application services at the edge of the network becomes essential. Moving all of the data IoT devices generate to a cloud data center isn’t efficient, and it slows down analysis and response. With Fog Computing, select data stays at the network edge, enabling a real-time response. It also presents an opportunity to improve business network security, since the data lives at the network edge rather than in standard cloud platforms available today.
Creating new business opportunities.
Besides those benefits, it will also transform business infrastructures of the future. As new IoT devices are developed and supported by Fog Computing, increased business opportunities will emerge. The experts at Cisco predict we’ll see many pay-as-you-go services on the market in the future — for example, pay-as-you-drive car insurance.
It provides support to:
- The Internet of Things (IoT).
- 5G mobile systems and embedded Artificial Intelligence (AI)
- Big Data
- Edge analytics
At the end of the day, it’s got the potential to enable support for IoT deployments by solving the current Cloud challenges of network bandwidth, latency, security and reliability. Thanks to its wide geographical distribution, the Fog paradigm is well-positioned to support real-time big data and analytics. Just as a fog bank in nature hugs the earth, Fog Computing will hug its densely distributed data collection points.
Now, this technology isn’t quite mainstream yet. But when it is, we’ll be ready to help your business make the most of it and harness its power. Nettology has Cisco certified (CCNP) engineers to help design, configure, install and support the Cisco environment that’s the right fit for your business.
Learn more about using Cisco, Fog or Cloud computing for your business.
We’ll learn more about your situation, and help you make the best decision for your business.