TVO’s The Agenda covered the usage based billing issue late last week. The debate is available here along with a commentary in support of overturning the CRTC decision.
Post Tagged with: "ubb"
include a comprehensive review of the regulatory framework applicable to all wholesale high-speed access services (â€œWHSASâ€) provided by incumbent local exchange carriers and cable carriers (collectively â€œincumbentsâ€) to their competitors and to include from the outset, in the expanded proceeding, an online consultation and a public hearing, and certain additional procedural steps.
The letter makes it clear that CNOC is seeking nothing less than a complete overhaul of the regulatory framework for broadband competition in Canada. The organization argues that “incumbent wholesale high-speed services, including the last-mile access, constitute the broadband platform that competitors need to offer almost all telecommunications and broadcasting services to consumers.” It adds:
There is a copper loop that goes from our Central Office to the home and all data travels on that pipe so it’s Internet traffic, it’s television traffic, it’s actually voice traffic, long distance traffic, but that’s not where there are general congestion issues. The real issue is when you get to the Central Office and you go behind that to the general Internet, FIBE TV is completely different.
Bell’s comments are noteworthy since they confirm that there is no congestion in the “last mile” – the connection between the user and the so-called Central Office. At the moment, Bell aggregates the data from both its own retail customers and independent ISPs at this stage (which it says causes the congestion necessitating traffic shaping and UBB), though the independent ISP subscriber traffic later goes to the independent ISP before heading to the Internet. The “congestion problem” is therefore not at the last mile nor at the Internet – it is in the intermediate stage between the two.
As the issue continues to attract attention and public comment, there has been no shortage of discussion about what the CRTC and federal government should do, how foreign investment fits into the equation, and whether action is needed on retail usage based billing practices that affect millions of Canadians with incumbent providers such as Rogers and Bell. Last week, I had several long posts about the issue and why there was reason for concern in the aftermath of the CRTC’s appearance before the Industry Committee (here, here, and here). This post attempts to unpack some of the UBB issues by discussing potential solutions including how to address the narrow issue of wholesale UBB, foreign investment, fostering greater competition, and next steps on current retail UBB practices.
The CRTC and Shaw have both announced public consultations on usage based billing. The CRTC notice invites public comment on its UBB policy with a deadline of April 29, 2011 to file comments (earlier if you wish to participate and receive copies of all submissions). I’ll comment further shortly. Meanwhile, […]