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Ireland And The IoT

Why has Ireland become the centre of the IoT?

25Jun

Ireland has become one of the biggest tech hubs in Europe during the last 5 years, pushing forward the IoT forward around the world.

This has been due, in part, to the tax incentives given to high-tech companies which base their headquarters in the country, but the developments that are currently taking place there are truly impressive regardless.

For instance:

- Intel have developed their Quark chip in Ireland
- S3 created the most energy efficient analogue to digital converter there
- HP, SAP and Vodafone (amongst others) are looking at new opportunities in the country

These are only some of the things happening in the emerald isle though, it has become one of the biggest technology hubs in the world and perhaps the most desirable place to base a multi-billion dollar company. This has led to some of the most forward thinking work in IoT technologies. 

But why are these companies all working in Ireland?

Traditionally, this has been put down to the huge economic benefits that have come from Ireland's generous tax breaks. These have allowed companies to base themselves in the country and transfer billions of dollars in profits to tax havens. It meant that they could exploit the ‘Double Irish’ loophole to increase profits and pay only 12.5% corporate tax compared to the European average of 22.15% and North American average of 33.25%.

However, companies are now claiming that although this is certainly a nice policy to have, it is not the single reason for a change in headquarters. After several successful years of the bill bringing companies to the country, this does make sense, especially as hundreds of companies made this leap, attracting some of the brightest tech minds to Ireland. It created a situation where the top graduates from around Europe would move to Ireland’s ‘Google Quarter’ to take advantage of the high tech companies in the area.

Some of the companies based in the country include: 

- Apple
- Dropbox
- Google
- Facebook
- Microsoft

This influx of tech-minded people has meant that fears for the tech industry due to Ireland's expected rise in corporate tax rates, seems to have been unfounded. In fact the rate of development within the country, especially surrounding IoT, has increased, showing a renewed excitement around the potential in the country.

It is not only educated people from other areas of Europe who have come to Ireland for this though, we have also seen institutions within the country creating opportunities in the IoT, such as Cork Institute of Technology’s Nimbus Centre. Here they have experimented with creating smart objects that can be used with connected devices to allow for communication between them.

In addition to this support, Ireland’s geography also has a major part to play as it sits only a 7 hour flight to the East Coast of the US and 2 hours to Berlin. It means that they are very well placed to deal with some of the biggest tech hubs around the world and act as the gateway between Europe and the US.

The rate of development is only likely to increase in the future, and with this Ireland’s claim to be the IoT capital of Europe will only increase further. 

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