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Edge Analytics: What is it and what are its scope in IoT?

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What is Edge Analytics?

Are you wondering about Edge Analytics benefits, tools, or what is it exactly? If so, then let us tell you that Edge Analytics is collecting and analyzing the data at the sensor, device point itself. It is not like waiting for the data sending back to the cloud or on-premise server. In simple terms, we can say that performing the analysis at the point of generating data. The main focus of Edge Analytics IoT and data science is speed and decentralization. Basically, it is the attempt to collect data in decentralized environments, which is a great benefit as well. The Edge Analytics paradigm becomes possible because the internet and web connectivity has improved. Using Edge Computing and analytics has evolved because of the need for fast response times and quick data analytics IoT networks impose. Instead, Edge Analytics in IoT optimizes the process by handling the bulk of analysis on-site, usually in the nearby connected network like switch or device. Then, it transmits only the most critical data back to a central server.
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Edge Analytics solutions help organizations where data insights are required at the edge, Retail, Manufacturing, Energy, Smart Cities, Transportation, and logistics vertical segments are leading the way in deploying Edge Analytics. There are many use cases of Edge Analytics in IoT like retail customer behavior analysis, remote monitoring and maintenance. For energy operations, fraud detection at financial locations (ATMs and others), and tracking of manufacturing & logistics equipment.

Why Edge Analytics?

  • Saves Time

In centralized systems, all the collected data at internet-connected devices is sent in their raw state for the processing, which is inherently slow. Whether this raw data is relevant or uncleared, processed, and analyzed to extract any value it contains. Now, what happens is that most of the deployed data is useless, and some of the information is inaccurate. In contrast, in a centralized system, all data is given equal status until an analysis is complete. The main aim of the using Edge Analytics system is to filter out the unnecessary information before analysis, and only the relevant data runs through higher-order systems. All of this results in saving both processing and uploading time, which makes the complicated analytical stage performed on the cloud much more efficient and is a great benefit.
  • Reduce Expenses

Edge analytics in IoT curtail the cost of data storage and management. It also reduces the operational costs, minimizes needed bandwidth, and reduces resources spent on data analysis. All these factors combine to provide significant financial savings. In the majority of industrial IoT, the data is never even analyzed, which results in wasting much information and lost improvements. Though the volume of data starts inhibiting analysis, then using this technology gives a cost-effective way to extract as much use from the data as possible, for the benefit of the business.
  • Preserves Privacy

Edge Analytics helps to preserve privacy as when sensitive or confidential information is captured by a device (such as GPS data or video streams). This sensitive information is preprocessed on-site and does not get uploaded to the cloud for processing. This extra step means that only privacy-compliant data “leaves” the device for further analysis, and it goes through an anonymizing aggregation in preprocessing. This sensitive content is preserved without losing out on the benefits complex cloud-based analysis can offer.
  • Reduced Latency of Data Analysis

Using Edge Analytics is more effective to analyze data on the faulty equipment and immediately shut it up rather than waiting for sending data to a central data analytics environment.
  • Connectivity Issues

Edge Analytics in IoT helps to protect against potential connectivity outages by ensuring that the applications are not disrupted by limited or intermittent network connectivity. It comes useful in remote locations or reducing connectivity costs while using expensive technologies like cellular.
  • Reduced Bandwidth Usage

Work on the backend servers gets reduced, and analytics capabilities are delivered to remote locations switching from raw transmission to metadata.

Edge Analytics - A Supply Chain Technology Trend

How to Deliver Edge Analytics?

It includes creating the analytics model, deploying the model, and executing the model at the edge. In each of these areas, some decisions need to be taken regarding the collection of data. For example: preparing data, selecting the algorithms, training the algorithms continuously, deploying/redeploying the models, and much more. The processing or storage capacity at the edge also plays an important role. Some of the merging deployment models consist of decentralized and peer-to-peer deployment models with pros and cons for each. Read more about Digital Twin Development

A Holistic Approach

Therefore, Edge Analytics is useful, but one should not take it as a full replacement for central data analytics. Both of these can and will supplement each other in delivering data insights and add value to businesses.

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