Products & Services Dec 12, 2013

Smithsonian: Is the Future of the Internet in Iceland?

The Smithsonian thinks the future of the Internet might be in Iceland. The article says that, “Much like how, when you call for tech support, you’re likely to speak to someone in India, we might be on the verge of an age where we routinely outsource much of our data to the frigid island of Iceland.” This means Iceland may soon have the major market share in international data hosting. Iceland’s mix of natural energy and cool temperatures make it an ideal location to power and store servers.


Iceland creates more sustainable energy than its small population can use, and has been trying to figure out how to export this energy to Europe and North America. Unlike coal, this energy can’t be moved to other countries on a barge, so Iceland found that the most efficient way to transfer this energy: “We’re shipping power out of Iceland and around the world in the form of bits and bytes over fiber optic cables,” said Jeff Monroe, CEO of Verne Global. Verne depends on power from Landsvirkjun National Power Company, an Icelandic power company dedicated to providing sustainable services at a low cost. Click here to learn how Landsvirkjun is working to power the future.

Some companies are hesitant to use Iceland’s facilities because of the country’s vulnerability to natural disasters (volcanic eruptions and the less common earthquake), and because it takes an additional 80 milliseconds from data to travel from New York to Iceland and back. However, Verne’s CEO points out that  every location has it’s drawbacks and risks–the data center in New Jersey shut down when hurricane Sandy hit, knocking offline. Additionally, Verne’s facility sits on secure bedrock at a former NATO  base, upwind from volcanic activity.

BMW is one company that currently uses Verne’s data center in Iceland and is even considering building its own data center nearby, “in anticipation of all the data that’ll be used by their increasingly connected cars, equipped with their new ConnectedDrive technology, that provides drivers with cloud-based voice control and real-time traffic information over a wireless connection.

Click here to learn more about the Verne data center in Iceland and why more corporations are using these data centers.