Scaling IoT at the Edge for Tomorrow

Blake Kerrigan from Lenovo ThinkEdge discusses edge computing’s evolution and the future of building smart networks at the edge.

Blake Kerrigan

April 5, 2021

3 Min Read
Scaling IoT at the Edge for Tomorrow
(Source: Unsplash)

Edge computing is evolving and is the future of building smart networks at the edge. Here are some points to consider.

Why is edge computing at the next frontier of evolution?

Computer networking experts have been on the edge for nearly a decade, and the journey has not been easy. As the edge evolves to servicing ever-increasing workloads and more complex tasks, IT decision-makers have to chart a course to keep pace and avoid falling off the edge.

The frontier days of building enterprise edge networks were exciting and chaotic. A silicon tapestry of solutions was woven together by a dispersed galaxy of hardware manufacturers, software vendors, and IT talent in enterprises. Things worked, mostly. But many customers became over-dependent on vendors building their edge devices to spec, and they spent considerable resources developing software to run and manage edge applications. Now similar solutions can be bought off the shelf for considerably less.

Why should organizations be thinking about the edge now?

Today, a wave of consolidation and standardization has helped mature and grow the market, enabling greater accessibility to the edge. We’re seeing wider adoption take shape as industries across sectors are harnessing the power of the edge.

Gartner estimated that by 2025, 75% of enterprise-generated data will be processed at the edge. They also estimate that by 2022 over 80% of enterprise IoT projects will incorporate artificial intelligence applications.

Retailers are implementing more automated checkouts and dynamic signage, as well as real-time store traffic monitoring, inventory, and fulfillment. Manufacturers are further automating assembly lines with predictive maintenance alerts and using smart cameras for safety and quality inspections. The healthcare industry is using edge computing for remote patient monitoring and medical device integration. The list of successful applications goes on.

With the increased need for powerful, real-time insights across industries, the edge is becoming more critical and complex than ever.   

What should organizations think about before investing in the edge?

What worked early on to harness the edge might still serve enterprises relatively well today, but it probably will not be sustainable in the future. Too much is changing too fast.

First, for reliable performance at the edge, enterprises should consider exploring purpose-built devices that are rugged, powerful, and secure. Building an enterprise edge network on a patchwork of gateways and single-board computers is not sufficient enough anymore.

Second, global enterprises need partners with the hardware, software, and service solutions to support worldwide operations. Local and regional vendors might have been an option at the start of an edge journey, but they will not support global operations now or in the future.

How is Lenovo meeting the needs of edge customers?

Enterprise needs solutions born on the edge and ready to grow. Lenovo responded to these evolving customer needs with Lenovo’s ThinkEdge portfolio.

Powered by Intel® technology and built for the data needs of tomorrow, ThinkEdge devices are small and ruggedized embedded computer devices for edge workloads. The ThinkEdge solutions are for customers who need faster processing power, better security, and scalability. Built for the challenges of edge implementations in the enterprise, they have extended temperature and 5G support.

With secure data on hand when it matters, businesses can be more efficient, insightful, and competitive.

Please go to to learn more.

Do you have any parting words?

After the first decade of building the edge infrastructure and the development of numerous use cases, the required form factor at the edge has become clear – powerful, rugged, easy-to-scale.

The journey at the edge is accelerating with better infrastructure that is pushing performance to create new insights, experiences, and revenue channels.

So, you better plan and watch your step, or the edge could get away from you.

About the Author(s)

Blake Kerrigan

Blake Kerrigan currently leads the worldwide edge computing business within Lenovo Intelligent Device Group emerging business team, his responsibilities include global business line management and product marketing for the latest product family–ThinkEdge. Blake and his team are hyper focused on enabling better technology that drives transformational business changes for all enterprises. By leveraging the latest silicon technology, along with Lenovo’s award-winning design and development principals, ThinkEdge is enabling edge computing to scale globally. Prior to joining Lenovo, Blake served as Director of Industrial IoT Solutions at Sierra Wireless and has held various management roles in the enterprise IoT segment.

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