01/07/2021 – Technology / IT / Operating system / Icari / Macron / European / Osman Dumbuya
Step aside Windows, iOS and Android – Europe’s first operating system is on the horizon
Berlin start-up Incari wants to create an alternative to Windows, iOS and Android. The IT firm is part of ‘Scale-Up Europe’ – an initiative championed by the French President Macron.
For decades, the global IT landscape has been dominated by Microsoft's and Apple's systems. Critics of the American-headquartered tech firms’ operating systems say that European values – such as data protection, data security, and property rights – are not always given sufficient consideration.
Such concerns led to the development of Incari – an entirely new development that works particularly quickly, in an energy-efficient manner, and can be operated visually and intuitively.
French President Emmanuel Macron received the CEO and founder of Incari, Osman Dumbuya, at the Élysée Palace.
Scale-Up Europe: changing the software landscape
President Macron, who instigated ‘Scale-Up Europe’ emphasised that the initiative is “a call to join forces around startups: to reinforce Europe’s sovereignty, develop the prosperity of our economies and societies, and achieve the objectives of social cohesion and climate transition that are at the heart of the European project”.
“Incari and President Macron share the idea of a strong Europe. A Europe which stands for change, for democracy, and for freedom,” commented Mr Dumbuya. “Incari will change the software landscape in Europe – both in terms of development and application. European programmes, applications and apps will have a different look and feel, as well as represent their own values.”
Incari’s CEO is actively supporting the ‘Scale-Up Europe’ initiative, and has also contributed to developing recommendations for the deep tech sector. Incari's most recent growth financing is backed by partners and investors who have come together as part of ‘Scale-Up Europe’.
‘Looking forward, we are convinced Europe can reach the next level, and have set an ambition for the continent to become home to 10 technology companies each valued at more than €100bn by 2030’, the company said in a statement.
Certainly, there is enormous interest in a European operating system – and not just in the Élysée Palace. A current, representative survey revealed that more than two-thirds of respondents were open to the idea of a European operating system. They would prefer to use the system provided it had at least the same functionality and existing data security.
Improving companies' competitiveness
“Many ideas fail on the path to implementation because the costs – for software and licences, for example – are too high,” advised Dumbuya. “On the one hand, this reduces willingness to innovate, while on the other hand, existing, often out-dated applications linger on.”
With its software, Incari is dramatically shortening the path from idea to finished product. ‘This saves on costs and speeds up the development process,’ the company said in a statement. ‘By simplifying the implementation of complex requirements, Incari is ensuring innovation and entirely new applications for customers.’
Existing operating systems are largely based on structures and technologies that are decades old. In contrast, Incari has been developed for the latest 3D methods. It has been designed from the ground up for visual and intuitive 3D interaction; on the flip side, conventional operating systems need to retrofit such functions, meaning they are significantly less powerful.
Beyond this, Incari offers numerous functions and framework conditions which are sorely needed by medium-sized companies and start-ups to allow them to commence development quickly while keeping up-front costs as low as possible.
European values defended
Operating systems developed outside the European legal area have little-to-no interest in European laws. Laws on data protection, privacy, or companies' IP are often implemented with a considerable delay or only in retrospect. Violations of the law remain without consequences, while the owners of the data lose out. In response to such shortfalls, Incari is striving to create an operating system that is committed to Europe's values. It safeguards data security, data authenticity, and property rights.
On a technical level, pan-European projects such as the use of GALILEO data for digitising public authorities (cadastres and land registries) can benefit greatly from the 3D technology on which Incari is based. In addition to public administration, medium-sized companies, start-ups and corporations also count among the potential customers. There are also use cases in healthcare, as well as in architecture and the infotainment sector.
The European operating system being pursued shouldn't be used solely in Europe, according to Icari – rather, ‘its qualitative advantages and sensible handling of personal data should impress people around the world and offer an alternative’, the firm said.
For the establishment of its European operating system, Incari anticipates a capital requirement of several hundred million euros over the next few years. Just recently, having been led by entrepreneur and investor Lukasz Gadowski (Team Europe), a series A round of financing was completed with a volume of €15 million; co-operation with other strong partners is in the pipeline.
The veteran founding team has already been able to establish a standard solution in the industry using the Vred visualisation software.
Incari emerged in May 2021 from its predecessor company ‘CGI-Studio’, which had up to that point primarily been active in the HMI sector for the automotive industry.