We must move India past its existing consultative processes for rule-making, which often prompts stakeholders to take adversarial and extremely one-sided positions.
Though the regulator has made progress in establishing an overarching framework for net neutrality in India, it has its work cut out in framing additional regulations.
While the telecom department will have to call on the regulator’s recommendations, TRAI has also reserved the right to regulate and enforce non-discriminatory access within its framework.
The move, which is a gross violation of the Supreme Court order on 2G and auctioning spectrum, could result in potential revenue loss of up to Rs 4 lakh crore.
The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India has also asked Reliance Communication to generate unique porting codes for customers wanting to migrate to other operators.
The regulator has abandoned an approach suited to India. Is it any wonder that its decision has sparked allegations of being skewed in favour of one company?
The regulatory body should terminate interconnection usage charges completely by 2019 instead of 2020, encouraging operators to turn the new disruption into an opportunity to meet Digital India goals.
While arguments over methodologies and calculations will find its way to the courts, the telecom regulator believes that symmetry in tariffs will bring about symmetry in traffic.
Incumbents Airtel and Idea, for whom net IUC income accounts for roughly 15% of their wireless business, are likely to be hit hard.
The regulator should encourage IP, while 2G should be phased out. Consequently, IUC should be brought down to zero at the earliest even as a transparent method is worked out to cover termination costs in the interim period.
While the FCC and TRAI chairmen may share similar goals, India’s telecom regulator should pick and choose what it wants to take away from the US debate.
On Thursday, telecom minister Manoj Sinha will meet with various industry players to discuss their demands. Most banks and telecom operators (barring Reliance Jio) want a number of sops to prevent industry loans from turning into NPAs.
Was TRAI, after consulting with the AG, right in allowing Reliance Jio to extend its tariff promotional offer after it expired?
Given the muscular regulatory state in India, the NITI Aayog’s progressive take on regulation in the context of innovation is a much-needed breath of fresh air.
The refusal of India’s telecom regulator to take action and Jio’s free data strategy has meant that the amount of money contributed towards the universal service obligation fund has dropped. Meanwhile, only urban teledensity keeps shooting up.
New offer comes less than a week after India’s telecom regulator “advised” the Mukesh Ambani-backed company to drop its Summer Surprise free data offer.
Jio says it will accept the telecom regulator’s advice and will discontinue the complimentary benefits given under the ‘Summer Surprise’ offer. However, users who have already signed up will continue to enjoy free data for next three months.
There’s a thin line between ushering in a new, digital telecom revolution and taking decisions that favour one particular player.
TRAI’s recent decisions have only added to the problems of the industry. In its zeal, the regulator may have gone against the basic spirit of the TRAI Act.
Existing satellite capacity can be used for Digital India if the DoT can bypass DoS and ISRO to negotiate with private operators – but is this possible?
A golden median between an ex-ante and ex-post approach is possible to achieve, if flexibility is at the core of TRAI’s regulatory ethos.
If the government is serious about backing disruptive technologies and finding indigenous applications, it needs to start encouraging disruptive and indigenous policy-making too.
Telecom regulator TRAI has said the tariff plans of Reliance Jio are in compliance with its regulations and the existing tariff orders.
The telecom regulator seeks to resolve the remaining aspects of net neutrality, namely speed and access.
The telecom regulator also takes aim at India’s Universal Service Obligation Fund and says it should be tapped for providing free 100 MB to rural Internet users.
The telecom regulator slaps a Rs, 3050 crore fine on Airtel, Vodafone and Idea while accusing them of stifling competition and engaging in anti-consumer behaviour.
With TRAI siding with Reliance Jio over the points of interconnect issue, incumbent telecom operators will have to prove they didn’t violate terms of their licence agreement.
The license conditions for telecom operators do not clearly specify when free trials should end and when commercial operations must begin. Reliance is using this loophole to expand its market to as much as possible.
One could call the potential removal of termination charges an underhanded move by TRAI. This begets the question, should the telecom regulator and not market forces incentivise the adoption of Internet telephony?
The telecom industry lobby characterises the telecom regulator’s recent interventions as a step which will harm the roll-out of Digital India.
Reliance Jio clearly wants to disrupt the market. But the question is whether such disruption will happen in a fair manner where no special advantage accrues to any one player.
The government has essentially backed itself into a corner after the attorney general’s opinion last month on the legality of levying a uniform spectrum usage charge.
Sources believe that two recent developments will allow TRAI and the Department of Telecommunications to revisit and finish the regulatory process on licensing of over-the-top applications.
Clocking in at a whopping 119 pages and a little over 20 questions, this is one of TRAI’s most broadly-focused and comprehensive consultations in recent times.
One of the biggest challenges in developing a discussion around net neutrality has been how several different issues tend to get conflated.
The consultation process for an overarching framework is being done in two phases this time, in order to be more comprehensive, but will also likely require greater focus and attention from the supporters of net neutrality.
The regulator is looking at whether giving away free data is possible without violating its earlier regulations on differential pricing of data.
Should you be compensated for call drops? TRAI wants to, but the Supreme Court and telecom operators don’t agree. Who is right?
A new draft bill that seeks to govern how any geospatial data about India is shared has the potential to affect anyone who wishes to share information and data such as maps and surveys.
Now that the dust is slowly settling, it’s a good time to sit back and understand the implications of the new rules, the obstacles in moving forward as well as grapple with some of the controversial reactions to TRAI’s decision.