Regulators in the European Union and United States are racing to rewrite telecom rules for a host of new technologies ranging from over-the-top voice to ultra high-speed wireless broadband. But does the regulatory mantra of “new rules for new times” represent the foundation of the new digital economy or its undoing?
Are regulations mandating an open internet the key to unlocking new innovation or a risky drag on investment? Do we need common spectrum assignments to scale deployment or can technically agile radios manage a pastiche of spectrum allocations? Will over-the-top voice and data services continue to expand access and reduce consumer costs or sink under the weight of new regulatory mandates?
How regulators answer these questions will determine the direction of billions of dollars of investment capital and affect the lives of digital consumers everywhere. Here, we explore how regulators in the EU and the US are approaching internet access, spectrum assignments, broadband deployment and over-the-top telecom services. The emerging picture is as complex and varied as technology itself.
Click here to read the full article, as published in our Global media and Communications Quarterly.