Have you had a chance to speak about cloud technology in Europe? If you did, I’m sure you had a mixed experience of love and hate relationships between European companies and cloud solutions. There is lot of interest in cloud, but local law, corporate policies and regulation make it really complex. Last year I wrote about some trends related to Europe and cloud business development – Will Europe Adopt Cloud PLM? I can see some interest in cloud market development in Europe for the last 12 months. Nevertheless, the cloud atmosphere in Europe is still very cloudy :). One of the biggest concerns and showstoppers to make enterprise cloud solutions proliferating in Europe is low and regulation around data privacy. It resulted in quite complicated restrictions on data location, data collection and storage.
Yesterday evening I stumbled on an the following GigaOM article – Europe’s love-hate affair with cloud computing; the week in cloud. Short article provides a believe that forecast for cloud solution can change in a near future. European lawmakers is calling for data protection reforms. The key is to create a single data privacy law across European countries. Here is an interesting passage:
According to a statement outlining the proposal, the proposed regulation is: “[T]he Union’s response to fear of surveillance. By adopting the Data Protection Regulation, the Union will equip it itself with a set of rules fit for the 21st century. Rules that will empower the very people whose data fuels the digital economy. Rules that will ensure the digital economy’s growth can be sustained.”
Single data privacy law can change marketing situation with cloud PLM solutions in Europe. Think about typical European manufacturer. Every manufacturing company has has lots of connection and relations in Europe and outside. The question of data storage, data access policies and other data related regulation can easy stop any cloud initiative.
What is my conclusion? Europe is an important market for PLM companies. Changes in data privacy regulation can enable faster adoption of cloud PLM technologies in Europe. In my view, it will have different aspects – data centers and IT partnerships, implementation services and more. One of the most important aspects is related to solution cost. Cloud infrastructure is expensive. By enabling sharing of this infrastructure cross EU, will allow to set a different perspective on solution / service cost. Just my thoughts…