July 5, 2023

Net Neutrality Podcast: Does Net Neutrality Harm Consumers and Limit Innovation? In Conversation With Roslyn Layton, Strand Consult

Today Mobile UK is publishing a podcast – a conversation with Roslyn Layton of Strand Consult on the subject of Net Neutrality.

Through her research, Roslyn provides evidence that hard net neutrality regulations (as exist in the EU and the UK) holds back innovation, slows network investment, distorts the mobile/broadband market and thus works to the detriment of consumers.

As the Government considers its Wireless Infrastructure Strategy, this is a timely contribution to the discussion.

By way of context, 2023 marks the 20th anniversary of the launch of 3G in the UK – i.e. consumers ’first experience of the mobile internet.

The mobile operators invested heavily in their 3G (and subsequently 4G) networks to deliver the capacity and coverage we all enjoy today. The knock-on economic and social benefits for theUK, derived from the operators’ investment has exceeded all expectations.

To give one example of such knock-on effects, the Progressive Policy Institute recently estimated that the UK’s App Economy supports 667,000 jobs, none of which existed when 3G launched or when Apple first opened the App Store in 2008.

Today, the mobile operators are building out their 5G networks – investment that will unlock many more opportunities for innovation and growth in the UK economy. One forecast estimates this to be in the region of £154 billion.

However, to achieve this will require the operators to invest heavily in 5G, at a time when their capacity to invest is much lower than in the early days of 3G. Indeed, Ofcom estimates that two of the four mobile operators are not currently covering their cost of capital.

In the Wireless Infrastructure Strategy, the Government has committed to ensuring the UK’s net neutrality rules are fit for purpose. Mobile UK is arguing strongly that reform of the rules is one of the key measures which will boost the operators’ capacity to invest in 5G, to the benefit of consumers and the economy.

The podcast can beviewed here:

About Building Mobile Britain

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Building Mobile Britain is a campaign created by Mobile UK seeking to work with national and local government, as well as interested industry groups to overcome the challenges we face with expanding the existing mobile networks, while also developing innovative services for customers.

See here for further information - or #BuildingMobileBritain

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Tel: 07887 911 076

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