Big tech groups face investigation by UK regulator over cloud services

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UK regulators have launched an investigation into the cloud market to determine whether Amazon, Microsoft and Google are limiting innovation and growth by making it harder for other companies to provide services.

AWS, Microsoft Azure and Google, dubbed “hyperscalers” because of the size of the data centers used to process and store data, account for around 81 percent of UK cloud market revenue, according to Ofcom.

“We will examine the strength of competition in cloud services in general and the position of the three hyperscalers in the market,” the communications regulator said in a statement on Thursday. “We will also look at any market features that may limit innovation and growth in the sector, making it more difficult for other companies to enter the market and expand their share.”

The investigation, which will take up to 12 months, aims to “make sure digital markets work well for people and businesses in the UK”, Ofcom said.

The regulator will seek to launch a wider investigation into apps and devices for accessing audiovisual content, including WhatsApp, FaceTime and Zoom, to understand how these services affect traditional communications services such as calls and messages.

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