Samsung, IBM to bring "edge computing" to private 5G

Samsung Electronics on Wednesday signed a partnership with IBM to combine “edge computing” with private 5G networks, the latest tie-up among big technology firms trying to help customers automate production.

“Edge computing” uses augmented reality (ER) and machine learning to analyse bulk data where it was gathered - whether factory floor, oil rig or office space - before moving it to remote servers in the “cloud”. To work, it needs fast data transfers of the kind that 5G signals provide.

“The whole idea of being able to connect to the edge and run fast processing applications for enterprises makes a lot of sense, especially when it’s real-time or semi-real-time,” said Taher Behbehani, a general manager at Samsung Electronics America.

Additionally, Samsung’s 5G equipment, covering several bands on the 5G spectrum, will work with IBM’s cloud technologies, including its edge platform, integration services and Artificial Intelligence products.

Steve Canepa, IBM’s general manager for communications business, said the collaboration will help businesses to integrate their data with different advanced applications.

Last month, IBM launched here a cloud platform directed at telecom operators deploying 5G built using technology from its software firm Red Hat. It has signed up 35 partners including network equipment suppliers and software vendors - among them Samsung and Nokia - to build an ecosystem.

Meanwhile, another telecommunications giant, Verizon, signed similar deals two months ago with Microsoft and Nokia to try to exploit the expected surge in demand from businesses who want to use new tools as 5G becomes ubiquitous.

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