Fog computing has emerged as a promising solution for the IoT and next generation mobile networks. As an extension to cloud computing, it enables service provisioning along the continuum from the cloud to things to reduce latency and bandwidth demands, and empower end users in their vicinity. Such a cloud-to-thing service continuum requires full technology support in infrastructure, platform, software and service levels. This article proposes FA2ST and its architecture to underpin a multi-level system of fog computing services for end-to-end support of IoT applications. It presents the concept of FA2ST and describes its architecture, main features, a use case in a vertical industry, and a performance study.
IoT encompasses massively diverse entities such as vertical systems, communication networks, smart devices/things, and applications, which enrich IoT with a plethora of data. Usually, an IoT system needs to collect, process, and analyse these data in a timely manner. This leads to growing bandwidth demands and low-latency requirements. Fog computing changes the way services are delivered to customers to meet IoT requirements. Fog infrastructure and service platform will not only be at the network perimeter but also span along the cloud-to-things continuum to allow computing resources to be deployed anywhere along this continuum, including in the cloud, at the edge or on the things, and to also pool these distributed resources to support applications. To achieve the full potential of fog computing, Prof. Yang Yang’s research group introduces fog as a service technology (FA2ST) and its architecture, a fog computing system for end-to-end service enablement. FA2ST aims to enable a multi-level service management system for fog-as-a-service. It supports a cloud-to-things service continuum from service providers’ perspective by a fog choreography system that concordances different communication channels, storage and computation resources to provide and manage fog services for varying application domains. The main contributions of FA2ST include a dynamic fog network that manages service deployment and localizes resources for an efficient transition process, and an adaptable service management model to wrap fog resources and enable fine-grained service provisioning across multiple application domains.