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The global multi-access edge computing (MEC) spend will grow from $8.8 billion in 2022 to $22.7 billion by 2027. This 260% growth will be driven by increasing requirements for on-prem machine learning and low-latency connectivity enabled by 5G.

According to Juniper Research, over 3.4 million MEC nodes will be deployed by 2027. Autonomous vehicles and smart cities are identified as key beneficiaries of increasing MEC rollouts, by enabling the handling of data to be processed at network edges. This will decrease the physical distance that cellular data will need to travel, causing a reduced network strain.

Operator partnerships with agile technology companies, such as AWS, IBM, and Microsoft, will also be essential in achieving the growth of MEC node rollouts. As per Juniper’s forecast,  over 1.6 billion mobile users will have access to services underpinned by MEC nodes by 2027.

Mobile cloud computing is anticipated to be a highly valued MEC service amongst mobile users over the next five years, providing benefits by migrating processing power to the cloud.

Delivery of digital content, including video streaming, cloud gaming, and immersive reality, will also leverage the geographical proximity of MEC nodes and increase value proposition by improving video caching and computational offload.

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