LIRNEasia is a regional ICT policy and regulation think tank active across the Asia Pacific

Tag Archives: OTT

U-turn on calling apps shouldn’t excite Bangladesh

Government dictates the rate of international calls being terminated in Bangladesh. And it is always way above the hyper-competitive international wholesale voice rate. The regulator also takes away 40 per cent of the gross international revenue. Both the elements have been strongly incentivizing illegal bypass. Moreover, the international gateway (IGW) operators have been allowed to […]

What is the competition for international direct dialling into Myanmar?

Call-Internationally

Reading a story about how profitable DTAC in Thailand found the up to 5 million Myanmarese living in Thailand to be, I was reminded of what LIRNEasia-MIDO had submitted in response to the draft International Gateway regulations in January 2016. Imposing non-cost reflective termination rates for international incoming calls is counterproductive especially in the market […]

OTTs vs Telco: South Africa enters the battle

India started in April 2015, when the regulator (TRAI) proposed rules for how application/content providers (Over the Top Players, or OTTs) should be regulated, taxed and treated (that  debate got sidelined in the battle over Facebook and FreeBasics, but that’s a different story). Now it’s South Africa’s turn.  It seems that two operators are pushing for […]

How can TRAI make sense of nearly 1 million submissions on net neutrality?

The news reports suggest that TRAI has already received nearly 1 million submissions to its recent “Consultation Paper on Regulatory Framework for Over-the-top (OTT) services” that has sparked a heated debate on net neutrality. In addition to drafting a response ourselves, we also turned our attention to the problem of analyzing such a large volume […]

Study: OTT boys will eat $14bn lunch this year

Over-the-top players like WhatsApp, Facebook and Skype will cost mobile operators an estimated $14 billion in lost revenues this year. And it will be 26% more from 2013, according to a study of Juniper Research. It has detected that in a number of markets the mobile voice revenues had fallen bellow 60% of their value […]

Indian regulator leaves OTT alone

Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has decided not to regulate over-the-top (OTT) providers, such as Skype, Viber and WhatsApp. The mobile operators claim that such apps will annually cost them  over US$822 million in lost revenues, as subscribers prefer to use free voice and messaging apps. Therefore, they demanded to regulate the OTT providers […]

Battling analogies: Which wins will decide outcome of teleco-OTT tussle

Among the comments to an informative article on Zuckerberg’s interactions with telecom CEOs at GSM Mobile World tamasha in Barcelona was this: The carriers are making tons of money supplying pipes. The expensive pipes are in demand because of the low cost apps people can run over them. It would be like power companies complaining […]

Viber adds Asian muscle?

Skype’s acquisition by Microsoft was a big story. This should be, too. Japanese e-commerce giant Rakuten acquired Viber for $900 million, just days after the CEO of the mobile messaging player denied it was in acquisition talks. Rakuten said the deal is aimed at strengthening its global platform by bringing Viber’s user base to its […]

The upside of the net neutrality court ruling. Will the FCC regulate OTTs?

This is stuck at the end of a New York Times article on how the new FCC Chair has been doing in his first months. Worth pondering over. But he has yet to speak plainly about his plans to overcome the net neutrality decision. Critics say that in doing so he has hidden just how […]

Is the canary of SMS dying in mobile coalmine?

Apps have attacked the lucrative harvest of voice with the tenacity of hungry locusts. Now they have targeted the farmhouse of messaging. And the device makers have joined the feast with independent messaging outfits. The revenue from messaging services fell by almost 4% in 2013 to just below US$104 billion. It predicts that the decline […]

Absolutist versus pragmatic net neutrality debated in US court

Can the telcos work out deals with OTTs about the traffic they carry? Or do they have to be absolutely neutral? These are the questions. The outcome will reverberate across the world. The case, which is expected to be decided late this year or early next year, has attracted enormous interest. On Monday, telecommunications lawyers […]

Excluding OTT players from a market = Trade restriction that is a violation of WTO rules

Just before WCIT, Hosuk Lee and I did a rush job that looked at the possibility that the ETNO-inspired efforts to extract rents from OTT players such as Facebook may violate GATS commitments. Now the issue has bubbled up on another front: When China and other nations block the websites of U.S. companies but the […]

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