Creating and sharing knowledge for telecommunications

How does the Spanish regulation of NGN affect to final users? Effects on the deployment of new FTTH infrastructures

Paramio, F. P. ; de la Torre, I. T. ; Sainz, B. S. ; López-Coronado, M. L. ; Rodrigues, J. R.

Telecommunication Systems Vol. 64, Nº 2, pp. 391 - 415, January, 2017.

ISSN (print): 1018-4864
ISSN (online): 1572-9451

Journal Impact Factor: 1,099 (in 2014)

Digital Object Identifier: 10.1007/s11235-016-0172-4

This article has the objective of obtaining detailed knowledge on the regulation of access to Next Generation Networks (NGNs) and its effects on a specific country, specifically Spain, given that it can be used as a reference to gain a better perspective and draw several conclusions on what has been a global pursuit during a key period of time, 2007-2015, for the electronic communications market in the European Union, where the current and historical role and position of incumbent operators is critical.
Focused on NGNs based on Fibre To The Home (FTTH) solutions and the collateral aspects that support their deployment (coexistence with older access networks based on copper pairs and maintained regulation regarding wholesale broadband transmission services), this paper takes up new issues: the opening of transmission infrastructure and installation and the regulation of new network infrastructures in buildings.
In doing so, we obtain a model of infrastructure and service competition that is also regulated by price, which promotes the deployment of new networks. We have generically evaluated the effect of this model on the deployment of NGNs in Spain and its effects on coverage, access to broadband service and the market shares of the different operators. The conclusions describe a successful model to a large degree because except when addressing the strictly economic aspect of return on investment, the objectives proposed by the regulatory agency have been achieved to date (2015) and within a long-term horizon (2008-2023).
Given that this phenomenon is not an exact science, the conclusions regarding the goodness of the model will always be subjective and nuanced; however, we indicate that it will be necessary to strengthen the path followed by the regulatory agency through the monitoring of resolutions that maintain a strong framework and sufficient security for operators and users. Certain issues that were not addressed should be studied, given that they have proven to be critical: geographical discrimination, fibre loop disaggregation, new prices for wholesale services that adapt reference offers and greater control of the replicability of retail services. We are facing an open model with a future, as the new measures (2015) of the Spanish regulatory agency show in terms of the near future.