Top telecom CEOs say US regulation is better than Europe

Telecom Lead @ Mobile World Congress 2013: Telefonica CEO Cesar Alierta, Vodafone Group CEO Vittorio Colao and AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson say American regulation is better Europe.

They have made strong calls for changes to the wholesale regulatory regimes in Europe.

AP on Monday reported that CEOs of AT&T, Vodafone and Telefonica said U.S. regulators are doing better than their European counterparts in promoting faster wireless data networks.

AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson said that the U.S. government’s practice of selling phone companies large swathes of space of the airwaves for perpetual use was helping encourage companies, including AT&T, to build out large networks using the latest LTE technology.

Telefonica CEO Cesar Alierta

By contrast, many European countries lease out space on their airwaves for eight- to 15-year terms. The perpetual licenses in the U.S. gives phone companies the incentive to invest. The large, contiguous slices of spectrum the U.S. sold in its latest auctions make it easy to build fast networks.

READ Mobile World Congress 2013 HERE

Catherine Haslam, wholesale analyst at Ovum, says operators need to change their attitudes towards mobile wholesale and enhance their wholesale portfolios to become enablers of more advanced and differentiated MVNOs.

“The limitations of many mobile operators’ wholesale services means that they are competing only on price and perpetuating a race to the bottom amongst budget MVNOs. If mobile operators enable more niche and value-added MVNOs, they can build a more effective wholesale revenue stream. Many are currently leaving wholesale revenues on the table by failing to see it as a mainstream revenue stream,” Haslam added.

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