Our notes from the TRAI seminar on the regulatory environment around OTT’s, essentially, regulation of Internet services in India, on Mobile. For context, read this and this. Please pardon the typos. Some parts of the talk have been paraphrased, and some points missed. Comments by Mahesh Uppal, Telecom Consultant: OTT services are in direct competition for players. It hurts fair competition. Consumer protection is a regulatory objective, and if you don't provide the same level of customer support, the regulatory objective to ensure that this isn't vulnerable to OTT. If the network traffic grows beyond the levels that people can invest properly, there is a risk to network growth. These are not services that are growing in India. There are compliance issues due to lack of jurisdiction. It would be wrong to say that it is the regulators role to protect revenues of (telecom) players. The other part for regulators is actually to understand that they cannot escape India specific responsibilities. India's regulators have an India specific responsibility. What does that actually mean? India's regulators need to worry about network growth, expansion of services. Options for regulators: - Regulate by function, not by terminology or infrastructure used. You cant regulate on the basis of license or technology - Harmonize rules and compliance based on the function. This doesn't mean that you should increase the burden on OTT's. You would end up hurting a very, very important segment of the broadband market. OTT's are going to play a very important role in the coming years. You…
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