We’ve all been there – after pulling out your smartphone in public, you sit and stare impatiently at the screen while the website loads. As precious minutes tick by, maybe the page appears, maybe not. Either way, you’ve wasted valuable time, and that assumes you even get the information you need.
Federal, state or local, no government is immune from this problem. And with more agencies now using mobile devices in the field, this issue will increase. To counter bad connectivity, agencies need a handle on their bandwidth, or the maximum rate data transfers over a given path.
According to Richard Lewis, Senior Solutions Engineer at Couchbase Federal and David Schexnayder, Principal Partner Solutions Architect at Couchbase, edge computing can help agencies avoid data lag. Couchbase is a cloud computing database provider; edge computing, meanwhile, enables applications to run at the location where they are needed. Using edge computing, agencies can save bandwidth and time.
On Tuesday, Lewis and Schexnayder spoke during GovLoop’s latest virtual summit. The pair shared three things edge computing can get agencies:
1. The 3 R’s
All agencies desire reliability, resilience and regulatory compliance. Reliability allows agencies to avoid disruptions, while resilience assists agencies with responding to and recovering from them. Agencies must additionally comply with federal, state, local and even global regulations about assets like data. According to Schexnayder, edge computing can provide agencies with reliability, resilience and regulatory compliance.
“Another benefit is bandwidth,” he added. “You definitely save on bandwidth when you reduce the data movement.”
2. Smart Cities
Smart cities are urban areas that use various electronic methods and sensors to collect data. Once futuristic, these communities are increasingly common thanks to technology. According to Lewis, edge computing also improves smart cities.
“It provides regional flexibility and easy integration,” he said. “This also guarantees high availability.”
Through edge computing, smart cities can collect information about, say, citywide water mains. From there, agencies can use that data to locate and fix leaks in their community’s water infrastructure.
3. Optimal Connectivity
Edge computing can solve those connectivity problems mentioned earlier too. Utilizing edge computing, agencies can manage their bandwidth optimally from any location.
“We’re only shifting data that needs to be sent to those devices,” Lewis said. “The right amount of bandwidth is being used to make the application effective.”
No matter how many smartphone bars government employees have, edge computing can give them the extra bandwidth to work miles from their agency’s headquarters.
The Next Big Thing
Edge computing may only become more important as mobile devices like tablets become more prevalent. According to Lewis, agencies should identify pain points edge computing can address.
“These mobile devices have changed our lives,” he said. “Businesses need to be able to run with that and stay in tune. Start looking forward.”
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