A new study from Juniper Research has predicted that global Multi-access edge computing (MEC) spend will grow from $8.8bn in 2022, to $22.7bn by 2027.
Increased demand for on-premises machine learning and low-latency connection – provided by 5G technology – will fuel this 260 per cent growth.
MEC is a network design that shifts processing power and digital information to mobile network edges, allowing end users to experience lower latency and quicker processing.
The new research, Edge Computing: Vertical Analysis, Competitor Leaderboard, and Market Forecasts 2022-2027, predicts that over 3.4 million MEC nodes will be deployed by 2027; rising from less than 1 million in 2022. It identifies autonomous vehicles and smart cities as key beneficiaries of increasing MEC roll-outs, by enabling the handling of data generated by connections in these markets to be processed at network edges. This will reduce network strain by decreasing the physical distance that cellular data will need to travel.
Global MEC reach to grow exponentially as operators expand
According to the report, operator partnerships with agile technology firms like AWS, IBM, and Microsoft will be critical in accomplishing the growth of MEC node roll-outs. By 2027, it is expected that over 1.6 billion mobile users would have access to MEC-based services, up from 390 million in 2022. Furthermore, during the next five years, mobile cloud computing is expected to be a highly valued MEC service among mobile consumers. Users will benefit from quicker processing power and smaller form factors by moving processing power to the cloud via MEC nodes.
MEC to ease network bottlenecking
Additionally, the report predicts that the delivery of digital content, including video streaming, cloud gaming and immersive reality, will benefit from the geographical proximity of MEC nodes and increase value proposition by improving video caching and computational offload. It urges operators to maximise the user reach of MEC by focusing on urban deployments first.