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The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has issued a preliminary report as part of its inquiry on digital platforms, which started at the end of 2017. The report carries 11 recommendations, and identifies nine areas for further investigation, which will likely be tackled in more detail by the final report to be published by June 2019. Stakeholders have time until February 2019 to provide their input on the comprehensive measures, which give a strong hint at the possible shape of platform regulation in Australia. The ACCC’s initiative is the most thorough and far-reaching regulatory initiative around online platforms so far – even more than the European Commission’s Platform-to-Business proposal, whose scope relates to the interaction between platforms and business users.
Rural mobile coverage continues to be an issue in many areas of the UK. While the latest Connected Nations report from Ofcom shows improvements compared to previous years, it also finds a significant part of the country is lacking sufficient coverage and will not be in a better place anytime soon, unless action is taken. For these reasons, the regulator is launching two complementary initiatives: one is the award of more spectrum to mobile operators, particularly in the 700MHz band, which is well suited to improve network coverage; the second is a plan to support spectrum sharing in the 3.8–4.2GHz band. This should equip operators with more airwaves for coverage, while at the same time making room for innovative approaches in which local operators and new businesses could play a role. Ofcom will seek input from stakeholders on both proposals until 12 March 2019.
The CEO of Apple, Tim Cook, made the headlines with his recent interview in which he called regulation of tech companies “inevitable”, and concluded that the free market has failed to deliver. His prediction is likely to be accurate, as policymakers increasingly see cases for intervention with regard to data protection and disinformation. Tech giants now need to move toward a more detailed and coherent stance around regulation; a generic call for pro-business regulation will not suffice, and companies’ need to match their words with action in order for them to retain trust with all stakeholders.
A regular briefing on the hottest regulatory and policy topics affecting the communications markets and the wider digital economy.
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December 2018 Briefing
- Regulating platforms in Australia
- Ofcom revises annual spectrum licence fees (again)
- 5G spectrum awards round-up
- Ofcom’s wholesale broadband access market review
NOVEMBER 2018 BRIEFING
- Unrestricted duct and pole access (uDPA) in the UK
- Net neutrality in Italy
- T-Mobile/Tele2 merger in the Netherlands
- Summary of International Grand Committee on Disinformation
OCTOBER 2018 BRIEFING
- Italy’s 5G auction
- FT-ETNO event round-up
- Cable regulation in the Netherlands
- Big Tech round-up
Keeping you aware of current regulatory developments day-to-day with a summary from our analyst team and URL back to the source.
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