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TRAI Fails To Deliver On Mobile VAS Promise: Drops Key Provisions

It is our considered opinion that the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India has failed to deliver on some of the key provisions that had been a part of its draft guidelines, and by dropping some clauses, they have created loopholes that we think will allow the status quo between Telecom Operators and Value Added Service Providers to be maintained. There are, however, a few positive steps like the instituion of transparency, but a key issue of dispute resolution in the Mobile VAS space remains untouched, and is further hampered by the plan to not go ahead with the creation of an 'Other Service Provider Category". Do remember that these are just recommendations from the TRAI, and India's Department of Telecom will make its own decision. The key changes have been made to the Common Short Codes Plan (Issue 8, Pg 41) and Other Service Provider registration (Issue 4, Pg 29). Common Short Code Plan Rendered Lame Based on a recommendation from the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI), the TRAI has recommended that Common Short codes be made operational within six months of allocation, instead of one year. However, the following clause from the draft guidelines has been altogether dropped: All the telecom access service providers shall have to integrate with tele and bearer service (Voice/SMS/ GPRS/WAP) to their network, the common short codes allotted by DoT. All the telecom service providers shall be mandated to open the common short codes allocated by DoT. The common short code allocated by…

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Founder @ MediaNama. TED Fellow. Asia21 Fellow @ Asia Society. Co-founder SaveTheInternet.in and Internet Freedom Foundation. Advisory board @ CyberBRICS

MediaNama’s mission is to help build a digital ecosystem which is open, fair, global and competitive.

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