WhatsApp Image 2019-09-19 at 09.52.34

Life on Edge: Schneider Electric’s edgy proposition

Schneider Electric’s first major event around Edge data centres kicked off in Singapore today, with Executive VP for Secure Power, Dave Johnson describing the edge IT trend as an exciting opportunity for the next 10 years, for the global energy management specialist.

He shared observation that from the perspective of enterprises today, these enterprises may have workloads on big cloud providers environments, on-premise environments and various other environments.

‘We all face the challenge of dealing with hybrid environments, with workloads located in a highly distributed manner.”

Edge data centres could be described as “computing enclosure/space/facility that are geographically dispersed to be physically closer to the point of origin of data or a user base.”

But, they are also exposed to all sorts of risk, according to Dave, because they are not designed like how big core and traditional data centres are usually designed. As a result, they have poor resiliency, and currently do not have many tools to manage them.

Dave also described that if a retail brand decides to open 100 locations, the edge IT (resources) they have across these locations are likely not standardised, without any IT staff on-site to support the edge infrastructure.

Integrated systems

Recognising this, Schneider Electric’s answer to this is a combination of integrated systems, cloud-based management tools and strong ecosystem collaboration to deliver infrastructure and services to customers.

“Integrated systems in Schneider’s scope is UPS, racks, and so on, all packaged together into different form factors ranging from pre-fabricated and modular data centres, to racks designed to enable edge IT, to micro data centres which are not necessarily ruggedised.

“When these are ready to go, it simplifies deployment at the edge.”

Management

Significantly, Dave also shared about the cloud-based tools to help manage all these disparate edge locations.

“With this management tool, you can look at lots of data, compare yours to others, easily do remote monitoring, scale and achieve better performance with predictive analytics.”

besides this, a software DCIM (data centre infrastructure management) solution called EcoStruxure IT creates a platform for delivering a lifecycle of services. Dave shared that this solution currently manages more than half a million data points every day, from 2500 connected customers.

Interestingly, this software was re-architected from scratch to better address requirements of edge IT.

The French-based company is positioning itself as an IT partner for organisations that want to transition their IT resources from core to edge locations, and ultimately drive digital transformation initiatives within their respective organisations.

 

(This journalist is a guest of Schneider Electric’s to this conference in Singapore).