According to India’s top telecom operator Bharti Airtel, Internet companies like Google, Yahoo! and Facebook should start sharing revenues with telecom operators in the country. The reason? telecom operators are investing heavily on spectrum and data pipes which this internet companies are making money out of it (specially through ads).
“Today, Google, Yahoo! and others are enjoying at the cost of network operator. We are the ones investing in setting up data pipes and they make the money. There is interconnection for voice then why not for data.
Network is capital-intensive, we have to pay for spectrum and voice revenue is coming down. At the same time, companies like Google, which have not invested more than a few billion dollars, are enjoying valuations that are ten times that of a traditional telecom player. It’s an unfair game” said Mr. Jagbir Singh, Director, Network Services Group, Bharti Airtel, on Business Line.
Airtel want telecom authorities to impose interconnection charges for data services just like it is applied for voice calls. Thus this internet companies pay for the data traffic usage. ( must note that Google, Youtube and Facebook accounts for 40% of the data traffic in India).
It’s not specific to Indian telecom operators, providers from around the world are putting pressure on regulators to find a resolution to this issue. Telecom operators are now investing more on alternative data services like Wi-fi hotspot to offload data traffic from its 2G, 3G and 4G networks.
You can learn more about the Internet usage trend in India, which reports more Indian’s are going online through Mobile.
Do you think telecom regulators should impose charges on data traffic? Do comment your views.