Of EU data market set to e to €111bn by 2020
can it find correlations?
“Turning to cloud services, if big companies have to keep data in all member states, then they can use different clouds, but having to use different clouds would be too costly for smaller companies”, he said. “When we are able to remove barriers on the restrictions of forced data localisation, then efficiency will improve and the EU will get an €8bn per year growth in GDP. In addition, removing restrictions will result in a nine per cent reduction in operating costs for data centres, and we will save €7.2bn over the next five years.
“Looking at the use of cloud services then, once again, the picture around Europe is different. Fifty-one per cent of companies in Finland use cloud services, but the figure is only eight per cent in Hungary. It is more financially efficient and safe to use cloud services than using your own server down in the basement. According to analysis, if companies have their own servers, then only 20 per cent of those capacities are really used. In clouds, 90 per cent of capacity is used, so if high speed is needed in some sectors, it is easy to switch to higher speed in a cloud, compared to changing a server in the basement, which is more complicated.
“Some people think that banks can be robbed, which is why they keep money at home, but everyone knows that it’s pretty dangerous to keep cash at home. I can see parallels with data, clouds and banks.”
On the idea of free mobile phone roaming services around the EU, and the complexities involved, Commissioner Ansip said: “When talking about roaming, we are talking about travellers. Permanent roaming is impossible, because the situation between one state and the next is very different. In southern member states, where tourism is popular, mobile phone operators have had to invest in providing services for visitors only during the summer months. This means they would not be able to get much revenue in the other months. I am, of course, oversimplifying the situation.
“Mobile operators in Scandinavian countries offer very generous packages, and prices are really affordable. Of course, we have to protect these innovative services-providers. Data prices in Europe are very difference. In Finland, for example, you get hundreds more kilobytes than you get for the same price in Hungary. The average consumption of data in Finland in a month is 10 kilobytes a month, but the EU average is one gigabyte. If the wholesale price in Estonia is €1.4 per gigabyte between operators, and the wholesale price in the EU becomes €8.5 per gigabyte, it could create losses for operators of €7.1 per gigabyte.
“This is a complex issue. People might try buying SIM cards in Scandinavia, where they are cheap, and selling them in countries where they are more expensive. If a mobile operator needs to check the price differential - between the cheap price and where the cheap cards were consumed - they would need to decrease quality of services domestically, or ask for a derogation to stay out of the system”.