Why last mile monopoly is a roadblock in broadband growth

The monopoly stifles the competition and infrastructure sharing.


KOLKATA: Demand for broadband connectivity has existed in India for a while, but recently, calls for better quality of service are growing increasingly strident. While the existing cable TV infrastructure could play a potential role in delivering broadband, last mile monopoly is one of the major factors that prevent the growth of the sector through infrastructure sharing.

In response to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India’s consultation paper, one of the largest broadcasters - Star India stated that there is still a problem of last mile monopoly in the cable TV industry arising from exclusive deals between cable TV operators and Resident Welfare Associations (RWA).

“Following TRAI recommendation on ‘In-Building Access by Telecom Service Providers’ in January, the DoT in November 2019 issued an advisory to all telecom service licensees to share in-building infrastructure to share infrastructure in airports, railway stations, bus terminals, metro lines and hospitals etc. The MIB, as the licensor of all MSOs, must issue a similar advisory for sharing of cable TV operators’ in-building infrastructure and infrastructures within a particular RWA,” Star India said.

The broadcaster mentioned that 1,600 MSOs and 60,000 LCOs have laid a vast network of copper coaxial and fibre network connecting 8.3 crore households. It suggested that since these are private networks and do not utilise scarce spectrum, the government should exempt cable operators with Internet Service Provider (ISP) license from paying AGR for a minimum period of five years, provided that they operationalise them within six months of obtaining ISP license. According to the broadcaster, this will incentivise cable TV operators to provide broadband services and instantaneously increase wired broadband connectivity from 1.9 crores to around 10 crores.

Leading ISP Atria Convergence Technologies Ltd also pointed out that there is a huge monopoly in providing cable TV services as the dominant LCO takes over a particular area by tying up with a single MSO and completely stifles the competition by preventing entry of other LCOs and MSOs in the given area.

“Wired ISPs are seen as a threat by the LCOs and the same usually results in sabotage of network assets of the wired ISPs. If wired ISPs need to actively collaborate with LCOs, then these prevalent practices in cable TV industry should be curtailed and arrangements between ISPs and LCO should be left to market forces,” it added.

Latest Reads

After riding high on IPL, upGrad says sports partnerships a priority

NEW DELHI: The year 2020 was the year of disruption. It was also the year for new opportunities. One major upward trend was the e-learning boom and the massive growth in edtech market space which revolutionised the education sector. Indiantelevision.com spoke to Rahul Karthikeyan, head of marketing...

iWorld Over The Top Services
Tandav and the future of storytelling

MUMBAI: A tight slap. That’s what the streaming industry has got in the face from the Supreme Court when it refused to protect the Amazon Prime Video team – involved in creating the controversial political thriller Tandav – from being arrested.

iWorld Over The Top Services
Twitter gets a brand makeover, iconic bird stays

KOLKATA: Twitter has got a brand makeover to stay in step with the times and the people who inhabit the platform. However, the iconic bird of the logo is not going anywhere. “We felt the brand expression we launched five years ago didn't fully reflect the complexity, fluidity and power of the...

iWorld Social Media
How the MensXP Shop became the rising star of a media entity

As a top-rung digital publication dedicated to men’s lifestyle, MensXP has been going through a massive transformation since adding commerce to its bouquet. The switchover from being a media entity to full-fledged retail operations wasn’t easy or hiccup-free.

iWorld Over The Top Services
SC refuses to grant interim protection to Tandav makers

NEW DELHI: The furore over Amazon Prime Video’s web-series Tandav refuses to die down. In the latest development, the Supreme Court has declined to grant interim protection to the producers of the show amid apprehensions of arrest. The court had issued the notices on a plea filed by the director,...

iWorld Over The Top Services
Zee5 India elevates Manish Kalra to chief business officer

KOLKATA: Zee5 India has promoted Manish Kalra to the position of chief business officer. Kalra joined the platform back in May 2020. Earlier, he was working as AVoD SVP and business head. Now, he will now be responsible for overall SVoD and AVoD business. He will lead user acquisition strategy,...

iWorld Over The Top Services
TikTok to scale down its workforce in India

KOLKATA: Following the government’s decision to retain the ban on Chinese apps, TikTok developer ByteDance has decided to scale down its workforce in India. The company, which employs more than 2,000 people in India, is also unaware if or when the short format video app will be functional again in...

iWorld Over The Top Services
Republic Media collaborates with Koo & Mitron for Republic-Aatmanirbhar Bharat initiative

Republic Media Network has announced two mega editorial partnerships with two homegrown brands – Koo and Mitron under its Republic-Aatmanirbhar Bharat initiative.

iWorld Over The Top Services

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories

* indicates required