Cloud Computing vs Edge Computing

The Difference Between Edge Computing and Cloud Computing (and which will work best for your business)

Jul 17, 2021

If cloud computing has been the buzzword around business and tech circles for the last few years, edge computing is quickly following suit as the next big thing. Such has been the hype around edge computing that many are inclined to treat the cloud as a thing of the past. However, this sort of antithetical approach between edge and cloud computing is actually not very meaningful for business use cases. Cloud adoption has been too widespread in the industry for it to be in danger of extinction anytime soon and edge computing is at the beginning of its cycle. Although edge computing has been heralded as an alternative or replacement for cloud computing, it may actually serve businesses better to understand the USPs, key strengths and limitations of each. This can help them to leverage the strengths of both architectures as and when required. In fact, edge computing can be approached as an extension of the cloud computing paradigm that solves many of its conventional limitations. Cloud computing Vancouver can be a valuable resource in understanding this approach.

Understanding the basics of edge computing and cloud computing

Edge computing architecture allows for decentralized data storage and processing power that are hosted as close to points of data generation or end-users as possible. This is generally referred to as the edge of the network. Edge computing can be adapted to cloud use cases as well as mobile use cases. In the case of device edge, for instance, data hosting and processing can be handed off almost completely to end user devices including IoT equipment. Cloud edge allows you to bring applications and data processing closer to points of data generation. If further processing is required, the initially processed data or results can then be sent back to cloud data centres. The significant reduction in data transit results in the resolution of long-standing latency and bandwidth issues in networks and allows for real-time data processing at scale.

Data is gathered and processed in a centralized location in cloud computing. All applications leveraging the cloud remotely need to connect to it – which means that the data needs to travel from the point of generation to the cloud and back – in order to be processed effectively. However, the centralized nature of cloud computing also allows for easier governance and implementation of cybersecurity frameworks. For companies that continue to use a client/server network, there are many benefits in using public cloud services that allow them to securely store mission critical applications and data in a centralized cloud conveniently accessible only to authorized users on demand.

For more information on specifics of edge and cloud computing architectures, please consult IT Support Vancouver.

Edge Computing vs. Cloud Computing: What’s the Difference?

The distinction between cloud and edge computing can be understood as simply the difference between centralized and decentralized networking architectures. Cloud computing excels in its ability to centralize workloads on remote servers but is hindered in its capacity to connect effectively when the network gets too crowded. This is particularly true for use cases driven by low latency requirements, such as decision-making required for autonomous vehicles and smart factory floors.

But the fact remains that in most use cases edge and cloud are more similar than dissimilar in their functions. In such cases, the distinction between cloud and edge computing should really be driven by the needs of that particular networking environment. Cloud computing Vancouver can be a great resource to understand the unique distinction in real-world applications of the two networking architectures in your specific business domain.

We will look at the differences in business applications of both edge and cloud computing further on in this article. To start off with, it’s important for businesses to understand that securing edge computing architecture is very different from cloud computing. The former requires a thorough cybersecurity plan that is capable of proactively addressing breaches and attacks while cloud comes with many cybersecurity features built-in. Opting for cloud computing may require lesson investments in securing your networking architecture.

Edge or Cloud – Determining the suitability for your business

Straight off the bat, you should understand that choosing between edge or cloud computing does not mean you have to let go of one entirely. The suitability of each for your business will depend entirely on the nature of your requirements. For operations that require massive data processing and storage, cloud computing would be a better bet, as opposed to use cases that are sensitive to latency, such as real-time data processing and decision-making wherein edge computing would, quite literally, have the edge.

Companies with budget restraints can make use of edge computing to deliver exceptional performance while saving on costs. Edge computing is also useful for operational use cases that require leveraging different platforms for programming with significantly different runtimes. However, if you want to do programming in a set target language, cloud is better suited, as they are custom-built for specific platforms and use a single programming language.

If your operational use cases are driven by IoT and 5G, edge computing architectures may be necessary to effectively leverage their potential. Also, edge computing is well-suited for data and information-based applications and streaming technologies. To harness the best of both worlds, many companies are choosing to incorporate edge computing with centralized cloud computing, resulting in the increasingly popular fog network infrastructure. The driving factor behind this trend is to combine the reliable data gathering and processing offered by edge computing with the massive storage capacity and processing capabilities of the cloud. This can enable organizations to keep applications and IoT devices running seamlessly without crimping on analytical data for improving services and driving innovation.

Let your business needs dictate which architecture is most suitable for your purposes and consider partnering with a data center with ample expertise in meeting your kind of cloud storage and edge data center needs. IT Services Vancouver has extensive experience in providing businesses with powerful cloud computing resources and multiple edge data centers.

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