CxO Insight

FutureNet Asia, NTT DoCoMo Speaker Interview

Zaif Siddiqi, Executive Director, Global Head 5G & IoT Enterprise Business, NTT DoCoMo, is speaking on a Panel at FutureNet Asia. We recently caught up with Zaif to get his thoughts on the topic of his panel: 5G & Intelligent Edge – Unleashing the potential.

What do CSPs need to do to operate at the edge?

CSPs are strategically positioned whereby they provide network and services. Bringing edge into this picture means they can leverage both of these areas to their advantage and also choose to collaborate with ecosystem partners including the hyperscalers. Therefore, CSPs should ramp up their capabilities with highly skilled talent in the edge to be able to advise clients how to optimize the infrastructure and develop new business models with lower costs. This will bring in new revenue streams and open more doors for the CSPs to further capitalize on the infrastructure and the solutions they provide.

How big is the opportunity?

There are big estimates given by a number of sources but we will become aware of the outcome only after real massive deployments take place. Examples would be expressways, railroads and general public infrastructures. There could also be cases for specific location solutions such as in stadiums, hospitals and business complexes. At DOCOMO, we already have our own edge known as the docomo Open Innovation Cloud (dOIC). It offers an AI embedded feature and allows partners to develop applications. We already see many uses cases in areas of XR and Intelligent Edge Security.

How much will better quality of experience owe to a dynamic, distributed cloud-based model?

With dynamic and distributed cloud-based model, data can literally be anywhere whether on-premise, public cloud or edge. From a user standpoint, it may really not matter how the mix is as long as user experience is not downgraded and security not compromised. The distributed cloud model allows easier management of the clusters. This means that you pretty much end up with a true  “open cloud” that executes the services at any point and operate it with full customization.

What are the implications of edge for the network and are they well understood?

Edge allows data processing closer to the source and alleviates the traffic on the main network. This leads to lower latency since the physical distance is reduced. The question is how much better can it get? If you are operating on a small island with a small population, will edge be a must? If the benefits outweigh the cost, sure it can be deployed but somebody will have to look after that extra box. Both in the consumer and enterprise sectors, for many, edge is something on the learning curve. As more players deliver end to end solutions whether by themselves or through partnerships, sectors that require that extra low latency are studying the benefits of the edge. We often hear of smart factory, smart mobility, smart hospital, smart building and not to forget smart city. Once these become more prevalent, and they are, the edge will surely be better understood and used to enrich our lives.

To hear more insight from Zaif, join the event and register here