Designing new XR and gaming experiences in the Edge Computing Zone

April 3, 2019

847 words 7 mins

By Alisha Seam, AT&T Foundry in Palo Alto

The cloud has transformed personal computing – connecting us to each other and delivering and endless supply of media to our fingertips, changing the way we live, work and travel. But as digital content becomes more interactive, and data generation becomes increasingly decentralized, we need to reshape our internet and bring the power of cloud computing to the 5G edge. By building this processing power right into the network and bringing it closer to connected devices, we can enable a new class of near real-time applications.

This paradigm shift can’t be achieved by the network alone. We need the entire technology ecosystem to work together – designing the infrastructure, hardware, software, and content to utilize the power of the 5G network.

This was our motivation to announce an expansion of our Edge Computing Zone (EC Zone) program, which we launched last week with Designing the Edge at the Ericsson Experience Center in Santa Clara, Calif.

Our discussions during this two-day forum further underscored the disruptive potential of edge computing, as well as the need to work collaboratively to design and re-architect applications for this new computing paradigm. We are excited to engage new collaborators as we work toward the realization of our three core missions: cutting the cord on extended reality (XR) and gaming, enabling real-time sensor analytics for public safety, and orchestrating live HD-3D mapping frameworks for vehicle automation.

We chose to explore these three specific areas because they are ambitious, extremely worthwhile, and truly push the limits of what 5G hopes to achieve due to their heavy bandwidth, latency and near real-time computing requirements. We believe that integrating edge computing capabilities into the 5G network edge is key to designing the internet infrastructure of the future, and is why we also expanded our Edge Computing Zone efforts to include a 5G testing environment hosted at the Ericsson campus in Santa Clara.

Though Designing the Edge was a kickoff to this new lab, we’ve already worked with five of our early program participants to integrate their applications into our testbed and showcase the potential of 5G and edge computing in time for this launch:

These projects are only the beginning of our exploration of the edge and 5G. Over the next few months, we’ll continue working with these companies to quantitatively assess how next-generation network capabilities directly impact application performance and the end user experience.

The energy at Designing the Edge was palpable. We were thrilled to host such thoughtful, nuanced conversations and are energized by the new projects that they have already begun to generate. We look forward to working with our technology ecosystem to fully realize the potential of 5G.

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