These are the first pictures of EdgeCloudTM technology in action: intelligent small cells that combine the best of the cellular and cloud computing worlds. They are set to deliver a faster, more secure and more interactive mobile experience just where it’s needed – closer to mobile users.
Ubiquisys and Intel have been previewing a new generation of EdgeCloudTM devices and applications in private sessions at the Intel Developer Forum this week in San Francisco.
Femtocell-powered small cells register users as they enter and leave the cell, and they can make user authentication for location-based apps invisible to the user, removing the major barrier to mainstream adoption. They are also the convergence point for the various wireless technologies they provide: 3G, WiFi, LTE.
Small cells deliver data close to the user, and this clear signal is typically shared between far fewer users than on a macro cell – a combination that provides for a great user experience. But the experience can be further transformed if local video content, store vouchers or mapping data are stored and delivered by the cell itself rather than retrieved every time from the internet.
With small cells providing very fast data experience, more pressure is placed on the backhaul, which will often be variable quality ADSL. By intelligently caching local media on the cell, by using the cell to buffer uploads or to run application processes such as DPI, the load on the backhaul and its corresponding impact on the user experience can be dramatically reduced.
Our preview setup combines a Ubiquisys intelligent femtocell with an Intel M2M compute platform. By the time we run public demonstrations at Mobile World Congress in February both platforms will be in a single device.
We’re convinced that EdgeCloudTM technology will revolutionise both the experience and the economics of mobile data – what do you think? Watch out for the next post where we describe some of the EdgeCloudTM applications we’re demonstrating at IDF 2011.