American digital storage solutions provider Western Digital has announced the launch of its Ultrastar Edge servers designed to help support the expansion of 5G networks in harsh environments.
According to a report from VentureBeat, the ruggedized servers are designed and tested to comply with MIL-STD-810G-CHG-1 and MIL-STD-461G standards. This means they are capable of withstanding extreme shocks and vibrations and electromagnetic interference, and that they are resistant to dust and water, all while being able to deliver “high speeds and capacity for real-time analytics, AI, deep learning, ML training and inference, and video transcoding at the edge.”
This ability for the Ultrastar Edge series to operate in remote locations represents a key part of Western Digital’s efforts to expand the world’s essential data infrastructure, allowing data to be processed where it is captured, and increasing the ability to make real-time decisions for researchers in the field.
The last year has seen an acceleration in the release of 5G networks and technologies throughout the world. The race to be the first country to bring 5G fully online has resulted in some heated exchanges between the US and China, especially under former president Trump.
Tensions peaked last summer when UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson — under pressure from the Trump administration —backtracked on an earlier decision to allow Chinese tech giant Huawei to supply equipment for England’s 5G network, announcing instead that all Huawei products were to be removed no later than 2027.
Despite these high-profile cases, adoption of 5G technology has been growing rapidly. With more and more consumers gaining access to 5G-capable smartphones from companies like Google, Samsung, and Apple, the expectations of fast performance and the demand for compatible infrastructure not only in major cities but in more rural locations has also grown.