Cloud Portability and Interoperability under the EU Data Act: Dynamism versus Equivalence

19 Pages Posted: 13 Apr 2023

See all articles by Sean F. Ennis

Sean F. Ennis

Centre for Competition Policy, University of East Anglia; Norwich Business School, University of East Anglia

Ben Evans

University of East Anglia (UEA) - Centre for Competition Policy

Date Written: March 22, 2023

Abstract

This paper examines the provisions of the EU proposal for a Data Act relating to cloud portability and interoperability through a joint economic and legal lens. It suggests that the minutiae of the definition of ‘equivalence’, designed to protect firms consuming cloud computing services, are quite different from portability and interoperability rules for simple products due to product complexity and ongoing innovation. While a certain level of portability and interoperability are natural and essential for customers, the breadth of net cast by ‘equivalence’ as proposed could yield unintended consequences that not only lead to operational challenges in transferring customer assets but even product simplification to a lowest common denominator, reducing availability of the cloud computing service variety that customers seek. In the worst case, an overly expansive definition of ‘equivalence’ could create a race to the bottom that harms dynamic competition and innovation and limits cloud computing service availability in regions covered by the regulation.

Keywords: data, portability, interoperability, cloud, switching

JEL Classification: K20, L51, L86, O31

Suggested Citation

Ennis, Sean F. and Evans, Ben, Cloud Portability and Interoperability under the EU Data Act: Dynamism versus Equivalence (March 22, 2023). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4395183 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4395183

Sean F. Ennis (Contact Author)

Centre for Competition Policy, University of East Anglia ( email )

United Kingdom
+44 (0)1603 591622 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.competitionpolicy.ac.uk

Norwich Business School, University of East Anglia ( email )

Norwich
NR4 7TJ
United Kingdom
+44 (0)1603 591622 (Phone)

Ben Evans

University of East Anglia (UEA) - Centre for Competition Policy ( email )

UEA
Norwich Research Park
Norwich, Norfolk NR47TJ
United Kingdom

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