There continues to be a conversation around what the emergence of edge computing will mean for the wider cloud computing and infrastructure services market. In this article, we take a close look at the recent predictions from a Forrester Research analyst and compare with similarly dubious commentary from a Gartner analyst a few years back.
Forrester Research. Forrester claims edge computing will hit an inflection point in 2021 and its emergence will moderate cloud growth. Quoting the analyst: edge will “siphon off some of the money that would otherwise have gone to cloud expansion” (in 2021).
Further, “new edge vendors will shave five points off public cloud growth” (not a misprint).
No, 2021 is not going to be an inflection point for edge.
Let’s take the first one – about an inflection point. This is an over-the-top comment that really has no chance of coming true.
An inflection point suggests a significant and meaningful change of direction or pace. Nothing that has happened these last few years would suggest we are on the precipice of something like this in 2021. In fact, it is likely to take some time longer. Some of this boils down to definitions. Edge computing has been around for a while if you think about what CDNs have been doing and what data centers and MSPs have done in second-tier markets. None of this is going to suddenly change direction in 2021, and it certainly did not just emerge.