Telefónica is one of the 39 pioneering companies to join the European Industrial Data, Edge and Cloud Alliance, an initiative promoted by the European Commission to foster the development and adoption of cloud and edge technologies.
Edge technologies, such as cloud or edge, are strategic enablers to improve the overall efficiency of data processing systems and exploit the possibilities offered by developments such as artificial intelligence, Internet of Things or 5G.
The Alliance brings together a wide range of industrial actors – including companies, Member State representatives and independent experts – to strengthen the position of the EU technology industry and create opportunities to improve global competitiveness in cutting-edge technologies. Specifically, the initiative seeks to meet the needs of European citizens, businesses and the public sector to process highly sensitive data securely and efficiently.
To achieve this, they have agreed to promote strategic investments in line with the development of common data spaces to implement highly secure, distributed, interoperable and efficient state-of-the-art technologies. In addition, they will advise the Commission on the most appropriate standards and norms for cloud services, including public procurement requirements for these services. Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton said:
❝ With energy-efficient, highly secure and interoperable solutions, we will enable the adoption of new digital technologies, provide businesses and public administrations with a trusted framework for processing data and strengthen the position of EU industry.❞Thierry Breton, EU Internal Market Commissioner
The Alliance is part of the framework of some of the relevant initiatives recently launched by the European Union, such as the European Data Strategy, the agreement on Shaping Europe’s Digital Future and the Digital Decade 2030 strategy. In relation to the latter project, climate sustainability is a key focus of the agreed objectives, such as the establishment of sustainable data centers (climate neutral and highly energy and resource efficient) and the deployment of approximately 10,000 highly secure and climate neutral edge nodes across the EU. The agreement also aims to increase the percentage of European companies using advanced cloud computing services in Europe.
❝ This Alliance is a great opportunity for Europe to overcome the fragmentation of the cloud market in the region, position itself globally in emerging businesses such as edge computing and strengthen its ability to deliver future cutting-edge technologies that will accelerate digital transformation. ❞Juan Carlos García, Director of Technology Innovation and Ecosystems at Telefónica
Joining this alliance is part of Telefónica’s commitment to develop secure and competitive standards that strengthen European industry. In this line, it leads the GSMA’s “Telco Edge Cloud” initiative, which brings together more than 40 operators and 20 technology partners, and actively participates in the ETSI-MEC and 3GPP groups, the two main standardization organizations working on edge computing technical specifications. It also collaborates with industry associations such as 5GAA (5G Automotive Association), identifying and addressing the automotive industry’s requirements in edge computing, and works with the European telecommunications industry in the development of NaaS (Network as a Service) services that allow operators to expose and monetise their network capabilities.
Telefónica has already demonstrated its leadership position in Edge Computing with the launch of its commercial service in May 2020, and with the application of advanced technologies in different industrial sectors. These include technology projects for the tourism sector, connected cars, smart manufacturing and logistics chains and eHealth.