Wednesday, 20 April 2016 10:22

Telco competition benefits consumers, says ACCC Featured

By
ACCC Chairman, Rod Sims ACCC Chairman, Rod Sims

Consumers are reaping the benefits of competition in the telecommunications sector from increased data allowances, new services and lower prices, according to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.

The ACCC’s annual report on the sector for 2014-15 reveals that consistent with the trend in recent years, consumer demand for data is continuing to increase, affecting both fixed and mobile networks.

“Consumers are reaping the benefits of competition in the form of increased data allowances, new services, and lower prices,” ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said.

On fixed networks, Sims says data consumption grew by 40% to 1.3 million terabytes (TB) of data, while on mobile networks, data consumption increased by 35% to 110 000 TB.

Sims says the increase in demand for data is largely due to the popularity of audio-visual streaming services, including the introduction of subscription video on demand (SVOD) services such as Netflix, Presto, and Stan.

And, the ACCC says the industry has responded to the increase in demand by investing in their fixed and mobile networks to make sure that they have sufficient capacity to meet the data traffic.

“Service providers have also responded by increasing data allowances. During 2014-15, data allowances increased by over 70% for DSL internet services and more than doubled for post-paid mobile services.”

“While a smaller reduction than in the previous eight years, which has seen a 3.3 per cent fall each year on average, this indicates that competition on factors other than price has been a feature of the market,” Mr Sims said.

“Given this, the ACCC will continue to take a particular interest in ensuring consumers receive accurate information about network performance.”

Overall prices for telecommunications services fell by just 0.5% in real terms in 2014-15.

“While a smaller reduction than in the previous eight years, which has seen a 3.3% fall each year on average, this indicates that competition on factors other than price has been a feature of the market,” Sims said.

“Given this, the ACCC will continue to take a particular interest in ensuring consumers receive accurate information about network performance.”

The ACCC also notes that a number of important mergers and new alliances occurred in the past year, including TPG’s acquisition of iiNet and NBN Co’s acquisition of Optus’ hybrid fibre coaxial (HFC) network.

“The fixed broadband market is now relatively concentrated and further consolidation would receive close attention from the ACCC,” Sims said.

“The recent industry consolidation may reflect a desire to grow not only in response to increasing data traffic, but also to the growing presence of the National Broadband Network (NBN).

“The rollout of the NBN is one of the most significant features of the telecommunications market with nearly 700, 000 active services in 2014–15. The scale and complexity of the multi-technology mix NBN and its implications for competition and consumers continues to be a major area of ACCC interest.”

According to Sims, the communications sector “faces a number of challenges in the transition to the NBN and as network operators manage increasing data traffic”.

“We will continue to watch these developments closely and work to ensure that consumers continue to benefit from competition”, Sims concludes.

WEBINAR event: IT Alerting Best Practices 27 MAY 2PM AEST

LogicMonitor, the cloud-based IT infrastructure monitoring and intelligence platform, is hosting an online event on May 27th aimed at educating IT administrators, managers and leaders about IT and network alerts.

This free webinar will share best practices for setting network alerts, negating alert fatigue, optimising an alerting strategy and proactive monitoring.

The event will start at 2pm AEST. Topics will include:

- Setting alert routing and thresholds

- Avoiding alert and email overload

- Learning from missed alerts

- Managing downtime effectively

The webinar will run for approximately one hour. Recordings will be made available to anyone who registers but cannot make the live event.

REGISTER HERE!

LAYER 1 ENCRYPTION A KEY TO CYBER-SECURITY SOLUTION

Security requirements such as confidentiality, integrity and authentication have become mandatory in most industries.

Data encryption methods previously used only by military and intelligence services have become common practice in all data transfer networks across all platforms, in all industries where information is sensitive and vital (financial and government institutions, critical infrastructure, data centres, and service providers).

Get the full details on Layer-1 encryption solutions straight from PacketLight’s optical networks experts.

This white paper titled, “When 1% of the Light Equals 100% of the Information” is a must read for anyone within the fiber optics, cybersecurity or related industry sectors.

To access click Download here.

DOWNLOAD!

Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham - retired and is a "volunteer" writer for iTWire. He is a veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

VENDOR NEWS & WEBINARS

REVIEWS

Recent Comments