Three tech giants- Microsoft, Amazon and Google parent Alphabet Inc. lead and control the cloud computing business which has grown into a massive $4 trillion market.
Cloud could slip away from the giants?
The multi-trillion-dollar market runs on a network of over 100 giant data centers across the world that rent out computing power to customers and brings billions of dollars in revenue for the tech companies. The market is so big and profitable that retail giant Amazon has earned more via cloud computing that its core business- e-commerce.
However, these companies may find a worthy competitor in 5G. Telecom analyst Chetan Sharma suggests that faster 5G networks built by wireless carriers will provide them with a huge opportunity to cash on the emerging trends in the markets.
With several billion devices connected to the network at once and artificial intelligence become a part of everyday lives, companies and people need computing power that resides closer to them. 100-odd data centers across the globe are not enough to maintain the dominance of the Big 3 in cloud computing anymore.
The writer of a new report on cloud computing, backed by AlefEdge, Sharma said,
“Over time, cloud will be primarily used for storage and running longer computational models, while most of the processing of data and AI inference will take place at the edge.”
He said that the edge-computing industry would grow to $4 trillion by 2030.
Why edge-computing matters?
Wireless carriers hold a big advantage in edge-computing because they own cell towers and can easily control the access to telecom networks. Cell towers are available in thousands in the country, and with a 5G upgrade, they will be able to provide high-speed data connectivity to the users.
This doesn’t mean that cloud computing will be a part of our internet history. However, if the Big 3 fail to make amends with the edge market, they may be at a loss. Sharma noted that the bigger players realize that they need to sign partnership deals with operators and enhance their own network using the carrier’s real estate to stay competent.
Microsoft and IBM have made the first move in this regard. Both have already signed agreed with AT&T, the second-largest wireless carrier in the US. Google and Amazon haven’t revealed their hand yet, but it is likely that they will eventually jump in the bandwagon and make use of wireless carriers’ capabilities.