1.4 Main focus areas for products and innovations

As an internet service provider, the United Internet Group does not engage in research and development (R&D) on a scale comparable with manufacturing companies. Also within the context of its own sector, research and development expenditures play a fairly subordinate role. Against this backdrop, United Internet does not disclose key figures for R&D.

At the same time, the United Internet brands stand for high-performance internet access, solutions, and innovative web-based products and applications which are mostly developed in-house. The success of United Internet is rooted in an ability to develop, combine, or adapt innovative products and services, and launch them on major markets.

Thanks to its high-performance development teams, United Internet is able to react swiftly and flexibly to new ideas and trends, and to continuously enhance its established products by adapting them to changing market needs – a key success factor in the fast-moving internet market. The Company’s expertise in product development, enhancement, and rollout minimizes its reliance on third party development work and supplies in many areas, and thus ensures decisive competitive and time-to-market advantages.

At United Internet’s own development centers (especially in Karlsruhe, Berlin, and Bucharest), around 3,350 programmers, product managers, and technical administrators (corresponding to around 34% of all employees) use mainly open source code in clearly defined and modeled development environments. Third-party programming services are also used to swiftly and efficiently implement specific projects. This enables the Company to quickly develop products and adapt them to changing customer needs. United Internet also procures solutions from partners, which are then modified according to needs and integrated into its systems. With the aid of its self-developed applications, United Internet has a set of modules which can be easily combined and provided with product-specific or country-specific user interfaces in order to create a variety of powerful and integrated applications – a huge benefit when tailoring products to varying target groups, or for international rollouts.

Due to the steady growth in customer figures, the demands placed on reliability and availability are constantly rising. In addition to the further development of existing products and continuous optimization of back-end operations, the Company also focuses on continuously enhancing existing processes in order to raise system reliability, and thus also customer satisfaction.

Focus areas 2021

Consumer Access

  • FTTH/VDSL cooperation with 1&1 Versatel / Deutsche Telekom
  • Participation in broadband and landline test of Europe’s largest specialist magazine “connect”, once again rated “very good”

Business Access

  • Conclusion of wholesale cooperation with Deutsche Glasfaser for B2B fiber-optic products

Consumer Applications

  • Expansion of “letter notification” service with addition of “digital copy”, i.e., customers receive an email with additional PDF of letter content
  • Expansion of Smart Data Analytics platform based on cloud technology, enabling GDPR-compliant data-driven decision making (DDDM) based on company-wide data sets
  • Automated generation of TGP advertising target groups using state-of-the-art AI processes and connection to central Mail & Media data platform

Business Applications

  • Launch of “Managed Nextcloud” based on IONOS Cloud as “turnkey” groupware platform for storage, management and collaboration aimed at small and mid-sized enterprises
  • New Mac client for the use of HiDrive on Apple PCs
  • Integration of an e-commerce offering into “MyWebsite NOW” for the creation of small and mid-sized webshops
  • Launch of Deploy Now, a “static site deployment” offering for developers to manage their website projects directly via GitHub
  • IONOS wins six Gaia-X lighthouse projects in funding competition of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi)
  • Launch of Managed Network Load Balancer for automatic load balancing and managed NAT gateway for IONOS Cloud products
  • Implementation of DDos Protection Service in IONOS Cloud to ensure high availability and resilience
  • Launch of Monitoring-as-a-Service (MaaS)
  • Launch of “MyDefender” as a cross-device security and back-up suite