ITU-T Study Group 3 to consider proposals on the regulation of OTT services

The ITU-T Study Group 3 Regional Group for Africa (SG3RG-AFR) has proposed that ITU-T distribute a survey on the impact of over-the-top (OTT) services on data traffic and associated demands on network infrastructure. The proposal comes in parallel with the group’s request that ITU-T revisit the cost model put forward by Recommendation ITU-T D.50, specifically in the context of the impact of OTTs on the cost of international Internet connectivity.

These proposals will be considered by the upcoming meeting of ITU-T Study Group 3 (Economic and policy issues) at ITU Headquarters in Geneva, 16-20 March.

ITU-T Study Group 3 is home to a work stream (‘Rapporteur Group’) on the economic impact of OTTs. The SG3RG-AFR decision to study OTTs is in common with the line taken by its compatriot regional groups for the Arab Region (SG3RG-ARB) and Asia and Oceania (SG3RG-AO).

SG3RG-AO has built on the definition put forward by the ITU-infoDev ICT Regulation Toolkit to suggest a definition of OTTs. The group has also proposed three approaches to the regulation of OTT services, recommending that hands-off approaches of ‘regulatory forbearance’ should be time-bound; that regulators develop a set of guidelines for commercial negotiations between network operators and providers of OTT services; or that regulators develop OTT-specific guidelines, based on feasibility studies or consultations with providers of OTT services.

Visit the homepage of ITU-T Study Group 3 for more information on ITU-T standardization on tariff and accounting principles including related telecommunication economic and policy issues.

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