Multi-Access Edge Computing (MEC)

Insight Into the Strategic Relevance of MEC

Why MEC? Does the investment in a new type of network make sense for your business? For a small business, this technology does not make much difference. The cost to implement, then manage such a large scale network will not pay-off. For medium to large businesses, a implementing a MEC network will provide data where it is needed, quickly.

A MEC network is a network designed with server placement containing your data at the multiple key points around the country. For businesses that work internationally, you would place servers at key points around the world. The key point is to have your data at the closest point at any given time. You want workers to be able to access your network and be productive without network lag.

The portion of MEC that makes the magic work is your hybrid network. Your busines will need to mesh a Wifi coupled with a 5G network so that your employees are always connected. The current 5G wireless transformation coupled with IPV6 means greater security, faster speeds, and an always on connection. 4G LTE wireless networks are quite fast; however, they are not all the same. When speaking about 5G wireless, the technology delivers similar speed to Wifi whereas the network operator is only the delivery mechanism.

When you base your MEC network on a distributed database strategy, all of your employees, regardless of location, have access to the same information. The benefit of a large database buildout such as DDBMS (distributed database) is that your employees will no longer have the need to download files to a local laptop or tablet. In fact, when living files are downloaded, they quickly become obsolete due to updates from other team members.

Most people have worked in an office where a document is created, then emailed to another team member for further updates, and emailed back out to more team members, which quickly creates a version control problem. Team collaboration software has been created to help solve that issue. Another larger solution is to create an entire collaboration space along with document repository/library based on MEC. This will not only solve the version control issue, it will guarantee access to information where and when needed.

Over the next decade you will see more MEC networks along with new variants. As you start to look at ways MEC can increase your business productivity, I challenge you to dream big. For instance, when you look at where your data should be placed, what employees should have access, and which Wifi or wireless networks you want to add as part of your service, also think about the latest AI and how it can help you manage your service.

One excellent use of AI is to monitor the data that is accessed from each server on the network. Who is asking for information, specifically when and what. The user access patters should be tailored for a superior user experience. You should also use the access information to pre-plan reports in advance from simple daily managerial to complex deep dives such as sales data analysis for each territory. Once you implement MEC, there are no boundaries to the usefullness.