Link to original article: https://www.barrons.com/articles/computing-what-the-edge-could-mean-for-the-cloud-1531171883
It’s happened as some companies are once again considering the benefits of what’s called “edge computing,” in which companies own and operate their own hardware and software, as an alternative to cloud computing, in which it’s rented, according to a story by Barron’s Tiernan Ray that ran in this weekend’s magazine.
That’s benefited some companies Ray called technology’s “Old Guard”—companies like IBM (IBM), Cisco Systems (CSCO), and Dell Technologies. (Barron’s Andrew Bary, meanwhile, wrote recently on Dell’s offer to buy out VMWare’s (VMW) tracking stock.) As Ray wrote:
The counterrevolution began because customers who use Microsoft’s Azure cloud service, or who rented from Amazon’s AWS, have been hit with sticker shock. Renting computing power, with the meter running more and more, can add up. Buying stuff can sometimes scale back those costs.
Now a second component has emerged to fuel the backlash: Companies want to engage in machine learning, the technology du jour. They can use the cloud to do that, running on Google’s computers, but first they need to prepare the decades of data they have stored in their own computers about customers, facilities, historical pricing, sales, and myriad other details about the business. Then, they must move it to the cloud.
Because of its sensitivity, data wasn’t previously moved en masse to the cloud. And some companies still are very wary of doing that. Instead, they’d prefer to use edge computing.
This probably won’t last long, however. Ray notes that the Old Guard will probably look to reinvest any sustained success in edge computing into long-term growth opportunities. (Alphabet, Amazon and Microsoft are Barron’s Next 50 companies.)
But “Whether such deals can rejuvenate any of the Old Guard is uncertain,” he wrote. “They’re operating now in a better environment than they’ve seen in many years. But technology’s winners are always the innovators—a role that long ago passed from the grip of these aging behemoths.”