As the explosive growth of smart devices and enormous new applications, the variety of corresponding cloud services has been growing quickly. The conventional centralized cloud was faced with an overhead on backhaul links and high latency. Accordingly, a decentralized cloud paradigm including edge computing, mobile edge computing, cloudlet, and so on, was introduced to distribute cloud services to the edge network which located in proximity to mobile devices few years ago. However, this paradigm was not paid attention at that time since cloud technology and mobile network communication were immature to motivate mobile services. Recently, with the overwhelming growth of mobile communication technology and cloud technology, distributed cloud is emerging as a paradigm well equipped with technologies to support a broad range of mobile services. The 5G mobile communication technology provides high-speed data and low latency. Cloud services can be automatically deployed in the edge networks quickly and easily. Distributed cloud can prove itself to bring many benefits for mobile service such as reducing network latency, as well as computational and network overhead at the central cloud. Besides, we present some applications to emphasize the necessity of distributed cloud for mobile service and discuss further technical challenges in distributed cloud.
Part of the book: Mobile Computing