Vectoring should not restrict competition and consumer choice in the broadband market
Dr Leonidas Kanellos attended the ETNO-MLex Regulatory Summit which took place in Brussels on 24 May 2016. Representatives of the European Commission, incumbents, alternative operators, service providers, OTTs and users exchanged views with the delegates on the electronic communications framework review, investment, competition and regulation of NGA and cable networks towards the transition to 5G, connected cars and the Internet of Things (IoT).
Among other issues, Dr Kanellos' questions included the synergies to be developed between the automobile industry and telecoms regulation to achieve seamless connectivity via standards and interoperable solutions. The dialοgue also included the European Commission investigation into the German telecoms regulator BNetzAs decision to allow Deutsche Telekom (DT) upgrade its copper-based VDSL network with vectoring technology in areas close to its exchanges that was previously prohibited.
DT officials supported that this draft measure could enhance infrastructure investment competition and lead to increased broadband speeds for 6 million households mainly in rural areas. Vodafone and other competitors alleged that if the physical unbundling possibility was replaced by virtual unbundling remedies offered at non competitive prices , this could constitute a defavorable precedent for other European countries. The EC has also concerns that if DT is allowed to extend its use of vectoring, the alternative access solutions provided via VULA or bitstream products would not be sufficient to maintain competition in the market.