TRAI may liberalise net telephony segment, floats consultation paper

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New Delhi, May 12 (UNI) In a move that can bring down national and international tariffs even further, telecom watchdog TRAI today issued a consultation paper deliberating issues relating to provision of internet telephony in the country.

As per existing licensing provisions, there is no restriction on international PC-to-PC calls through the internet telephony.

However, Internet Service Providers (ISPs) are not permitted to have interconnection with Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN)/Public Land Mobile Network (PLMN) exchanges to provide Internet telephony within India.

''Allowing PSTN/PLMN connectivity to ISPs may provide a cheaper option to subscribers for making domestic and international long distance calls and may act as a catalyst in boosting the broadband penetration in the country. Not only this, internet telephony within country may also boost competition in National Long distance (NLD) sector,'' TRAI said.

Use of Internet telephony for calling PSTN/PLMN abroad has already generated competition in the International Long Distance (ILD) sector benefiting subscribers. Similar impact is expected in the NLD sector also.

However, this will require examination of certain regulatory issues like interconnection, numbering, lawful interception, emergency number dialing, Quality of Service (QoS), TRAI said.

UNI PDT AK BD1900

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