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News from 2017

FCC goes ahead with net neutrality repeal

As expected, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted on party lines “to restore the longstanding, bipartisan light-touch regulatory framework that has fostered rapid internet growth, openness, and freedom for nearly 20 years”.

  • Tuesday, 19 December 2017

European reaffirms support for net neutrality

The European Commission (EC) has reaffirmed its commitment to preserving net neutrality across Europe in the wake of a US vote to repeal its regulations, notes Mobile World Live.

  • Monday, 18 December 2017

FCC pairs with health body in rural cancer support

The US Federal Communications Commission’s Connect2Health Task Force (C2HFCC) has announced that the FCC and the National Cancer Institute (NCI) have joined forces, signing a memorandum of understanding that will focus on how increasing broadband access and adoption in rural areas can improve the lives of rural cancer patients.

  • Monday, 18 December 2017

Australia opens inquiry into digital platforms

Australia’s government has directed the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) to start an inquiry into digital platform providers such as Facebook and Google.

  • Monday, 18 December 2017

Germany weighs up regulatory reform to speed fibre deployment

Germany’s telecoms industry should accelerate the build-out of the country’s high-speed broadband network, its regulator said, adding it was considering easier regulation on fibre internet to speed the process, noted Reuters.

  • Monday, 18 December 2017

Fake news on the agenda of the EU’s digital commissioner

Fake news is a disease that European society needs to be “vaccinated” against, the EU’s digital commissioner Mariya Gabriel said as she opened a call for public comments on how the EU should respond to the spread of false information on internet platforms, reports Euractiv.

  • Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Telcos battle carmakers over communications approach

A fierce debate has gripped Europe’s automobile industry that will shape the future of all cars sold across the region: how to get internet-connected vehicles to “talk” to each other while travelling on the road, reports the Financial Times.

  • Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Wiretapping children’s watches banned in Germany

Certain smartwatches for children can no longer be sold in Germany as some of these models are equipped with a “wiretapping” function, reports Deutsche Welle. Germany’s Federal Network Agency, or Bundesnetzagentur, announced the ban saying that these watches can be classed as ‘unauthorised transmitters’.

  • Tuesday, 21 November 2017

FCC enacts next-gen network reforms; announces millimetre wave spectrum

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has enacted reforms that it says will better enable providers to invest in next-generation networks. The FCC is also seeking comment on additional reforms, including how the FCC can expedite rebuilding and repairing broadband infrastructure after natural disasters.

  • Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Serbia adopts new communications law

The Serbian government has adopted a new law on electronic communications that will bring the nation into full compliance with the EU’s 2009 regulatory framework, notes TeleGeography.

  • Tuesday, 21 November 2017

US stock markets converge on telecoms

US equities indices are poised for a revamp to keep up with the evolving nature of communications, reports the Financial Times.

  • Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Germany’s regulator rules on zero-rating case

The German telecoms regulator, Bundesnetzagentur, has issued a decision on Deutsche Telekom's zero-rated StreamOn offers, ruling that the scheme is legal, but the company must make some modifications, notes ZDNet.

  • Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Child online safety highlighted in UK report and green paper

A review by the UK Council for Child Internet Safety (UKCCIS) evidence group, made up of researchers from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), Middlesex University and the University of Central Lancashire, has highlighted the major risks, opportunities and emerging trends for children online.

  • Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Estonian presidency pushes ahead with European reform

The European Council has granted the Estonian presidency a mandate to begin negotiations with the European Parliament on the new European Electronic Communications Code. “Our future is digital, and these rules are key to creating a gigabit society throughout the EU,” said Urve Palo, Estonia's Minister for Entrepreneurship and Information Technology.

  • Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Momentum increases in Latin American roaming

Bolivia's telecommunications regulation authority, ATT, and the ITU have issued a statement confirming that they will work together to promote the goal of ending international roaming charges between countries in the Andean community, reports Telecompaper.

  • Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Australia decides not to mandate mobile roaming

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has decided not to “declare” (mandate) domestic mobile roaming. However, it says it has identified a range of regulatory and policy measures that could improve inadequate mobile phone coverage and poor quality of service in regional Australia.

  • Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Colombia set to merge telecoms and TV regulators

Colombia’s Ministry of Information Technology and Communications (MinTIC) has presented a bill to Congress that will merge the telecoms regulator, the Commission for the Regulation of Communications, CRC) with the National Television Authority (ANTV),...

  • Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Costa Rica’s regulator defends its decision on competition

Costa Rican telecoms regulator, Sutel, has ratified its decision to declare the nation’s wireless market competitive, rejecting an appeal from the Ombudsman’s Office of Costa Rica (DHR), reports TeleGeography.

  • Tuesday, 17 October 2017

European body issues statement on regulatory competence

BEREC, the body of European regulators, has issued a statement on the need for a minimum set of competences for independent national regulators (NRAs) for the new European Electronic Communications Code, as follows. First, independence is critical...

  • Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Economics of Australia’s national broadband network in doubt

The CEO of Australia’s National Broadband Network (NBN) company, Bill Morrow, has confirmed what the industry has been saying for years: that the network builder’s economic model is broken and that – under current conditions – it may never turn a profit, report IT News.

  • Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Calls for digital taxation on internet giants

France, Germany, Italy and Spain want digital multinationals like Amazon and Google to be taxed in Europe based on their revenues, rather than only on their profits, their finance ministers said in a joint letter, reports Reuters. 

  • Tuesday, 19 September 2017

GSMA finds fault in wholesale access networks

The GSMA has brought out a report, “Wholesale open access networks”, which examines the performance of the wholesale open access network (WOAN) model (also known as single wholesale network, SWN) in five markets: Kenya, Mexico, Russia, Rwanda and South Africa.

  • Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Australia tunes up for 5G

The Australian Communications and Media Authority has used a “spectrum tune-up” meeting to propose an accelerated process for considering releases in the millimetre wave spectrum for 5G broadband, and has released a consultation paper on the topic.

  • Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Swiss government upgrades its telecoms act

The Swiss Federal Council has adopted a partial revision of the Telecommunications Act (TCA), and the draft legislation will now be dealt with by parliament. The revision covers broadband services that are replacing traditional telecoms services and gives greater weight to consumer concerns, promotes competition and deregulation, and simplifies administration.

  • Tuesday, 19 September 2017

OECD reports on Mexico’s telecoms reform

Mexico’s 2013 telecom reform has brought benefits, spurring competition that has increased access and brought down mobile internet costs from among the highest in advanced economies to among the lowest, according to the OECD Telecommunication and Broadcasting Review of Mexico 2017.

  • Tuesday, 19 September 2017

European Commission to review roaming charge ban

The European Commission has already issued a call for tenders to carry out a study on the cost of providing wholesale roaming services in the EU/EEA countries, soon after the 15 June 2017 rule on banning roaming charges for fair usage came into effect.

  • Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Costa Rican court intervenes on mobile regulation

Costa Rica’s constitutional court has ordered sector watchdog the Superintendency of Telecommunications (Sutel) to impose a temporary minimum data transfer rate for post-paid mobile internet users that exceed their fair usage allowance, notes TeleGeography.

  • Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Mapping digital financial inclusion

The Brookings Financial and Digital Inclusion Project (FDIP) report for 2017 evaluates access to and usage of affordable financial services by underserved people across 26 geographically, politically and economically diverse countries.

  • Tuesday, 19 September 2017

South African draft mobile data regs could have unintended effects

The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa's (ICASA’s) recent draft regulations on mobile data expiry and changes to out-of-bundle billing practices for telecoms operators could unintentionally raise data prices, reports ITWeb.

  • Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Voice calling apps in India may no longer be an issue

A boost in data usage from the use of voice calling apps may mean the long-running debate into their regulation in India may turn out to be a “non-issue”, a source at the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) told The Economic Times.

  • Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Q&A with Augusto Preta Q&A with Augusto Preta

Augusto Preta - CEO, IT Media Consulting, Chairman, IIC Italian Chapter

  • Tuesday, 18 July 2017

ACCA’s Financial Services: Ready for the Cloud

On 22 November 2017, Ms Lim May-Ann, Executive Director of the ACCA, presented findings from ACCA’s Asia’s Financial Services: Ready for the Cloud report at the National Institute for Public Policy and Finance (NIPFP) in New Delhi.

  • Tuesday, 19 December 2017

Germany paves the way for cross-border IoT

Germany’s regulator, Bundesnetzagentur, has published rules for the cross-border marketing of mobile numbers which will further facilitate the global sale of machine-to-machine (M2M) applications.

  • Tuesday, 19 December 2017

Q&A with Rob Strayer Q&A with Rob Strayer

Rob Strayer, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Cyber and International Communications and Information Policy, US State Department

  • Tuesday, 19 December 2017

Kenya to force mobile money competition

he Communications Authority of Kenya will force mobile phone operators to share money transfer infrastructure, reports The Standard.

  • Monday, 18 December 2017

UNICEF and European Commission release reports on children

Despite children’s massive online presence – 1 in 3 internet users worldwide is a child – too little is done to protect them from the perils of the digital world and to increase their access to safe online content, UNICEF said in its annual flagship report.

  • Monday, 18 December 2017

China sends out digital economy signals

China is willing to deepen global cooperation in the digital economy to gain new momentum and expand global economic growth, the head of the country’s internet regulatory body has said.

  • Monday, 18 December 2017

Q&A with Dr Robert Pepper Q&A with Dr Robert Pepper

Dr Robert Pepper, Head, Global Connectivity Policy and Planning, Facebook

  • Tuesday, 21 November 2017

FCC goes ahead with media ownership changes

As expected, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has loosened media ownership regulations in the US after a 3-2 vote by its executive which, while an expected development under the Trump administration, has drawn a mixed reaction, notes Rapid TV News.

  • Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Illicit TV devices fail safety checks

Those tempted to buy illicit TV access devices such as the fabled Kodi box may get their fingers burned, literally, says a report from Electrical Safety First and FACT, one of the UK’s intellectual property protection organisations.

  • Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Poland allows wireless testbed

The Polish senate has passed a law allowing the country’s mobile operators to test new wireless technologies without incurring frequency utilisation fees, notes TeleGeography.

  • Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Italy joins in digital taxation plans

Italy is putting forward plans for a digital sales levy as a European crackdown on how large US internet groups pay tax gathers momentum, reports the Financial Times.

  • Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Australia highlights broadband consumer concerns

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has published a draft report detailing its market study of the communications sector, which includes 29 recommendations spanning a wide range of competition and consumer issues in communications markets.

  • Tuesday, 21 November 2017

FCC chairman wants FM radio enabled in mobile phones

FCC chairman, Ajit Pai, wants Apple to turn on the FM radio that’s hidden inside iPhones, reports The Verge. In a statement, he asked that Apple “reconsider its position, given the devastation wrought by hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria.”

  • Tuesday, 17 October 2017

European operators warn of risks to infrastructure under reform plans

ETNO, the European Telecommunications Network Operators' Association, has issued a strong warning about the direction of the European Electronic Communications Code. It says it is “no ordinary legislation. This is a once-in-a-decade opportunity to unlock investment in world-class infrastructure, which is the core of a successful society and economy.

  • Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Spectrum assignment report issued by European Commission

A report for DG Connect at the European Commission examines the approaches used by member states for authorising and assigning spectrum with a view to determining which methods might be most appropriate in the context of future 5G services.

  • Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Europe seeks greater decryption powers for police

The European Commission is seeking to give police greater powers to decrypt private messages as part of a wider proposal to crackdown on criminals and terrorists, reports EUobserver.

  • Tuesday, 17 October 2017

UK report on AI holds back on regulation

Nine months after the UK government commissioned an independent review into artificial intelligence (AI), the authors have revealed their findings, reports Wired.

  • Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Industry pitches for self-regulation of ads

A trade association whose members include Google, Facebook and Twitter will pitch self-regulation instead of a proposed federal law requiring more disclosure for political advertising on their online platforms, reports Bloomberg.

  • Tuesday, 17 October 2017

FCC votes to end local rule for TV stations

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC)  has voted to eliminate a longstanding rule covering radio and television stations, in a move that could ultimately reshape America's media landscape, reports the Washington Post.

  • Tuesday, 17 October 2017

UK’s Ofcom warned on investment strategy

A proposal by UK regulator, Ofcom, to force the wholesale network operator, Openreach, into significantly cutting the wholesale price of its 40 Mbps fibre to the cabinet (FTTC) product for internet service providers (ISPs) has “been dealt a blow” after the government warned it would “disincentivise investment” in new “full fibre” (FTTP/H) networks.

  • Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Report on good regulatory design

Regulations help governments support economic growth, social welfare and environmental protection. The challenge is to design clear, coherent and efficient regulations and to effectively implement them, according to a report by the OECD and the Korea Development Institute, which is about facilitating good regulatory design and implementation.

  • Tuesday, 19 September 2017

European employees must be told of workplace email monitoring

Companies must tell employees in advance if their work email accounts are being monitored without unduly infringing their privacy, the European Court of Human Rights said in a ruling on defining the scope of corporate email snooping, reports Reuters.

  • Tuesday, 19 September 2017

New Zealand introduces updated telecoms act

New Zealand’s Communications Minister Simon Bridges has introduced a bill to update the country’s telecoms act with a focus on increasing regulatory oversight and improving service quality, reports Mobile World Live.

  • Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Digital giants, data and European authorities

US tech giants are back in Europe’s spotlight, reports the Financial Times. Facebook and Google are both in the headlines over sanctions from European authorities, with Google kicking off its fight against a €2.4bn EU fine for abusing its market dominant position.

  • Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Caribbean states to update telecoms legislation

The five member states of the Eastern Caribbean Telecommunications Authority (ECTEL) are updating their telecoms framework with legislation, reports the St Kitts & Nevis Observer. A new electronic communications bill is expected to come before the parliaments of the member states.

  • Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Denmark’s regulator issues broadband competition framework

Denmark’s telecoms regulator, the Danish Business Authority (Erhvervsstyrelsen), has published two documents outlining the framework for competition in the broadband market, with the new decisions set to enter into force on 17 November 2017, notes TeleGeography.

  • Tuesday, 19 September 2017

EU member states reject extending spectrum licence terms

EU member states have rejected a European Commission proposal to extend licences for wireless radio spectrum to last at least 25 years – one of the cornerstones of the EU executive’s new attempt to overhaul telecoms law, reports Euractiv.

  • Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Thailand should focus on digital economy, says Internet Society director

Thailand needs to upgrade the National Broadcasting and Telecom Commission (NBTC) to focus more on coordinating various elements of the digital economy and society, says Rajnesh Singh, director for Asia-Pacific of the Internet Society, as the Nation reports.

  • Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Consenting to adware on new computers

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in the US says it cannot stop computer makers from selling computers that inject ads into webpages to US consumers, notes Ars Technica.

  • Tuesday, 19 September 2017

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