5G network slicing, edge computing and cloud robotics will enable growth of enterprise and industrial automation

A new report from analyst firm Mind Commerce revealed that the key to substantial growth for enterprise and industrial automation is a combination of 5G network slicing, edge computing and cloud robotics.

The introduction of 5G and edge computing — which brings data computation and storage closer to the location where it is needed, improving response times and saving bandwidth — to the enterprise and industrial automation market brings high capacity and low-latency communications. The research showed edge computing, driven largely by smart factories, is going to take off in the coming years, with the edge computing market in support of manufacturing in Asia reaching $194.4M by 2024.

In its ability to focus communications and computational capacity where it is needed the most, Mobile Edge Computing (MEC), in particular, facilitates optimization of 5G network resources. Without MEC, 5G would continue to rely upon traditional backhaul to centralized cloud resources for storage and computing, rendering much of the cellular technology’s claim to latency reduction null. MEC, in other words, provides direct access to compute power rather than relying upon transport through the core of cellular networks, enabling the storage of, and rapid access to, high volumes of data.

5G network slicing will also deliver significant benefits to enterprise users by enabling the balance of different requirements between different applications such as availability/reliability, bandwidth, connectivity, cost, elasticity and latency. Network slicing is the process of breaking down a given service into sub-services. These sub-services are then mapped to certain features or capabilities within a network slice. When combined with edge computing, 5G network slicing will especially benefit latency-dependent and timing sensitive automation applications within enterprise and industrial environments.

According to the report, the managed services market, specifically, will show immense support of 5G network slicing, with investments from that sector reaching $72.6M by 2024. In addition, key network slicing areas include Life Cycle Management, Configuration Management, and Performance Management.

Cloud robotics, according to the report, will “benefit greatly” from both edge computing technologies and the commercial launch of 5G.

Because 5G can provide the bandwidth necessary to enable various industries to leverage the next phase of robotics, it is expected to lead to a number of new consumer and industrial automation robotics scenarios, allowing Industrial users to capitalize upon new and enhanced 5G enabled robotics capabilities.

Emerging areas for industrial robotics include robotics-as-a-service, cloud robotics, and general purpose robotics, and the report revealed that the industrial segment will lead the market for robotics-as-a-service and tele-robotics through 2024. Additionally, hybrid cloud robotics deployments are projected to reach $9.7B by 2024.



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