4G&5G prices, competitiveness rankings, competition & mobile merger analysis, network economics and 4th MNO BC research studies, 2010–2022
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2014
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Mobile consolidation on Denmark’s doorstep
2014
Denmark
Telenor
TeliaCompany
merger

December 2014
Will consolidation lead to higher consumer prices for mobile internet access in Denmark as it did in the Austrian and German markets?

UPC Austria finally launches as an MVNO on Hutchison’s network
2014
Austria
Hutchison
Orange
merger
Libertyglobal

December 2014
Two years after the merger of Hutchison and Orange the European Commission’s presumed “effective” MVNO remedy is finally implemented – and as we predicted it is proven toothless

How much do EU consumers pay to use a Gigabyte of mobile internet on their smartphone while roaming in EU28?
2014
roaming
pricing

December 2014
Analysis of smartphone mobile internet access roaming prices in EU28 in Q4 2014

Net neutrality is about the price of open internet access, more and more EU governments realize
2014
zero-rating
Netherlands
Poland
Slovenia
Hungary
Greece
Slovakia
Luxembourg
Austria
Bulgaria
Irelands
Estonia

December 2014
On the 27th November 2014, last Thursday, on the European Council the representatives of the 28 EU Member States discussed, among other topics, the proposed Europe-wide regulation of net neutrality. The Dutch representative stressed that the regulation should explicitly ban vertical price discrimination of specific internet services, content and applications. Slovenia, Hungary and several other Member States have endorsed the Dutch proposal and asked for the explicit ban of price discrimination in the context of the net neutrality regulation.

Google, telcos and the push for a vertically integrated non-neutral internet – Friends, not foes
2014
zero-rating
Google
pricing

November 2014
Vertical integration of internet access with telcos’ specialized services (e.g. telco TV) and vertical integration of dominant search engines with internet search specialized services (e.g. Google Flights) are both severely restricting consumer choice, foreclose competition and harm the open internet

Flash note: Norwegian telecom regulator unambiguously states that zero-rating violates net neutrality
2014
Norway
zero-rating

November 2014
20th November 2014: this week we saw two notable net neutrality developments in Europe.

EU28 & OECD mobile internet access competitiveness report Q4 2014 (Digital Fuel Monitor 2nd Release)
2014
dfmonitor
pricing

November 2014
Major price movements on both sides of the Atlantic between Q1 and Q4 2014. Smartphone internet usage price rankings, price changes and internet access speeds EU28, OECD, 41 countries, 69 operator groups, 136 operators, 40 operator discount brands and 84 MVNOs.

Neelie Kroes's Specialized Services are a giant Net Neutrality loophole
2014
zero-rating

October 2014
Telco ‘access’ Specialized Services are no different from Google’s anticompetitive ‘search’ Specialized Services


Deutsche Telekom’s T-Mobile launches an ‘a la carte’ mobile internet model in Hungary
2014
DeutscheTelekom
Hungary
zero-rating

October 2014
In this public research note we present the latest net neutrality violations in Hungary, examine the adverse structural impacts that such ‘a la carte’ models pose to mobile internet access and conclude by highlighting the need for erecting a ‘Chinese spectrum wall’ between internet access over licensed mobile spectrum and discriminatory proprietary telco services (‘Specialized Services’).

US and EU legislators question zero-rating
2014
United States
zero-rating

September 2014
FCC refocuses the US net neutrality debate on zero-rating over wireless networks while in Europe national telecom regulators and the European Parliament are taking a closer look.

German telecom regulator: Zero-rating (volume discrimination) violates net neutrality
2014
Germany
zero-rating

September 2014
Zero-rated content or apps are applications or services that allow the end-user to consume unlimited Gigabyte volume of selected content without depleting their inclusive open mobile internet volume allowance (source: Wikipedia)

The consolidated Austrian mobile market in Q3 2014
2014
Austria
Hutchison
TelekomAustria
DeutscheTelekom

September 2014
The price of mobile internet in Austria, following the 2013 hike, surged again in Q3 2014. A profound structural change is in the making in the Austrian mobile data access market.

Hutchison Three – No longer a challenger?
2014
Austria
Hutchison
TelekomAustria
DeutscheTelekom

September 2014
The price of mobile internet went up notably in the UK during the 2H of 2014. The price of mobile internet also went up notably in Austria after the 4 to 3 mobile operator merger. The Austrian competition authority has already opened an investigation.

Reducing Wireless Competition in Europe
2014
Germany
Telefonica
KPN
merger

[External article, The New York Times]
July 2014
A recent decision by European regulators to approve the merger of two cellphone companies in Germany will significantly reduce competition and encourage further consolidation in the industry. Citing Digital Fuel Monitor research.


A government ruled for net neutrality. Too bad it wasn't your government
2014
United States
zero-rating

[External article, The Guardian]
June 2014
In America and Europe, the internet is going mobile out of convenience. In the developing world, mobile is the internet. Here's what happens when companies take advantage of that. Citing Digital Fuel Monitor.

Still not convinced that some EU telcos are trying to foreclose the mobile cloud storage market?
2014
zero-rating

June 2014
In this insight we take a closer look at telcos’ own zero-rated mobile cloud storage apps in Europe. What makes the mobile cloud storage market interesting from antitrust point of view is the fact that it is a well established, growing market with billions of Euros in annual revenues. A number of big internet companies like Google, Microsoft, Apple, Amazon and a plethora of start-ups such as Dropbox, Box, SugarSync, Mozy, CloudMe, justcloud, Carbonite, livedrive, Tresorit, Hightail, TeamDrive, Infinit, etc. are fighting for consumer attention in a competitive open market.

However, the mobile cloud storage market in Europe is just about to stop being open and competitive.

A critical look into the uncertain future of open mobile internet access in Europe
2014
zero-rating
roaming
Finland

May 2014
This report has been commissioned by Viestintävirasto, the Finnish Communications Regulatory Authority.

Telefonica’s Mickey Mouse commitments are irrelevant and ineffective
2014
Germany
Telefonica
KPN
merger

May 2014
Will Almunia succumb to Merkel’s pressure and clear Telefonica/E-Plus merger with toothless Austrian like remedies (leased 2600MHz spectrum, WiFi, MVNOs) or stand firm, enforce the law and prohibit the merger?

List of potentially anti-competitive zero-rated apps launched by EU’s incumbent telcos
2014
zero-rating

April 2014
On Gigaom: Forget fast lanes. The real threat for net-neutrality is zero-rated content

Incumbent European telcos are favouring their own or their OTT partners’ messaging, communication, music streaming, video streaming, mobileTV, cloud storage applications by zero-rating the generated volume i.e. volume generated by these applications does not deplete the end-user’s open internet gigabyte volume allowance. Zero-rating is essentially potentially blunt anti-competitive price discrimination. It favours telcos’ own, or their partners', applications and services thereby placing those offered by other competitors at a competitive disadvantage. In markets where big telcos face no challengers, such as Germany, and where the gigabyte prices for open mobile internet access are prohibitively expensive, price discrimination in favour of telcos’ own applications could be a game changer.

Why do some telcos charge over twenty times more for gigabytes on smartphones than on data-only plans?
2014
pricing

April 2014
One possible reason could be to make their own zero-rated traffic heavy smartphone apps more appealing to the end consumers. We compared the pricing of incremental gigabytes of Vodafone, Deutsche Telekom, Telefonica, Orange and Hutchison across their EU & OECD footprints.

US vs EU & OECD: prices, network performance, consumption, penetration
2014
United States
pricing

April 2014
In this flash insight we benchmarked key mobile internet connectivity competitiveness metrics in the United States against EU Member States and other OECD countries. In addition we show Deutsche Telekom (T-mobile) prices and network performance (measured by OpenSignal) in US vs different EU Member States.

Telcos are killing net-neutrality with overly restrictive Gigabyte quotas, anyway
2014
zero-rating
spectrum

March 2014
How much of its 4G and 5G radio spectrum capacities Europe should keep for open mobile internet access? How much for telcos' and their business partners' 'walled garden' video, cloud and m-health services (i.e. 'specialised services')

In those EU markets where competition between telecom operators can be best described as friendly net-neutrality is already on protracted coma – and the planned no-blocking & throttling rules of Neelie Kroes’s Connected Continent package will be no panacea. In protected telecom oligopolies (where no challenger mobile operator is present) all parallel fixed-line and mobile infrastructures and radio spectrum have already been or soon are to be consolidated in the hands of few friendly voice-era incumbent telecom groups with vested interests in protecting valuation of their fixed-line assets. In these markets telcos have already started to collectively restrict the maximum volume of open-internet on affordable smartphone tariff plans to just few Gigabytes. In contrast, in genuinely competitive markets, such as the UK, Finland and Austria, consumers could choose affordable (€15-€30) smartphone tariff plans that include very large (>10GB) or unlimited Gigabyte volume allowance.

Spectrum use in Finland and the UK versus Germany
2014
Finland
United Kingdom
Germany
spectrum
networkeconomics

March 2014
According to data reported by the national regulatory authorities and presented in the first release (1H2014) of the Digital Fuel Monitor the average monthly mobile data consumption per capita varies greatly across EU28. In 2012 the Finnish consumed on average 1.49 Gigabyte every month while the British 0.38 Gigabyte. The Germans on the other hand consumed a dismal 0.15 Gigabyte every month. Why do consumers in competitive markets (where a challenger operator is present) consume up to 10 times more mobile data than consumers in protected markets such as Germany? Are Germans less eager users of the internet?

Price level drives mobile connectivity adoption and use
2014
pricing

March 2014
The high, in many cases unaffordable, Gigabyte prices commanded by operators in protected markets where challengers are not present are effectively suppressing mobile broadband penetration and most importantly mobile data consumption.

Rewheel in the international media
Reducing Wireless Competition in Europe
The New York Times (editorial)


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