Despite what would seem to be a slew of advantages, Europe has failed to become a prominent home to consumer tech. While the U.S. is home to Apple, Amazon and Facebook and China is home to Alibaba and Tencent, Europe has few such easily-recognizable consumer tech companies. Part of this failure is the result of the structure of Europe (as compared to that of the U.S. and China). Simply-put, a number 1 company in Germany may well be unknown in other European countries. The good news is that European startups, for the first time a long time, have the chance to make significant inroads in this regard, especially given Chinese companies struggle to expand markets (due to not tailoring their services) and U.S. companies facing scandal after scandal.
To their credit, each of Europe’s tech hubs houses promising startups that combine emerging technologies with each region’s unique brand of engineering and industrial expertise (e.g. BenevolentAI, FiveAI, AImotive, Lilium and Volocopter). European Union (EU) officials have also helped in defining what a new generation of European startups should look like by pushing back against global tech giants’s concentration of power, tax avoidance and erosion of privacy rights. In the end, Europe (and its emerging startups) now stand at the forefront of a bright vision of the future, one without advanced tech options that are not centered around constant GPS surveillance, mass-organized chaos on social media and cheap knockoff versions of things we already have.