August 02, 2022 | Market Intelligence
It has always been difficult to deal with visibility and uncertainty in supply chain operations, especially with the involvement of many players spread globally.
To tackle this challenge, organizations are integrating edge computing and 5G into the supply network, providing the businesses with low-cost yet high-yield software to create a more robust and effective supply chain.
Gartner predicts that 25% of supply chain decisions will be made across intelligent edge ecosystems through 2025, and 75% of organizations will adopt some form of edge computing solution by 2026.
The edge computing market is likely to grow by a CAGR of 12.46% to $116.5 billion by 2030, according to Precedence Research.
Edge computing enables devices located far from cloud and on-premises servers to gather and analyze a significant amount of data from the different parts of a supply chain. This allows decisions to be made closer to the information's original source making edge ecosystems stand apart from the powerful computers found in data centers.
Edge computing and 5G provides computing power, performance, and reliability to support warehouse automation and automated material handling, including tracking and tracing assets to avoid data blind spots in the supply chain and the elimination of system downtime to avoid revenue loss.
Edge computing and 5G also allow for wider adoption of blockchain.
Whether in a peer-to-peer or one-source-to-many network, blockchain can increase visibility amongst all participants in a supply chain and hold each party responsible for their portion of the production process.
According to Gartner, there are use cases where smart robots can enable connected automated and autonomous networks of edge decisions. One such case is warehouse operations, which is expected to transform warehousing in large organizations. Robotic automation in the form of smart intralogistics is a specific type of cyber-physical robotics that is largely used in warehouse and distribution center settings.
Edge computing makes sure that supervisors, supply chain managers, and others are always aware of the exact inventory that is present in their facility.
By tracking all the parts on-site using predictive maintenance analytics, edge computing can help maintain inventories to deliver premium customer experiences, low latency, and high performance.
Industries such as healthcare, retail, travel and hospitality, utilities are already benefiting from edge computing.
One example is PepsiCo has architected a 5G-compatible, offline-available edge solution to support its field sales representatives.
Within the health industry, BackpackEMR is providing access to healthcare in rural areas through cloud services without an internet connection and sharing patient data across their devices at the edge.
In telecom, AWS’s partnership with Verizon provides mobile edge services to 19 of the most populated metropolitan areas in the U.S. It also works with Google and Microsoft on several private enterprise and industry use cases.
Many supply chains are also using edge computing.
Labor shortages, escalating labor costs, and COVID-19's aftereffects will make it necessary for businesses to invest in cyber-physical systems, particularly intralogistics smart robots.