Telcos offer Europe 5G networks if EU weakens net neutrality

Mobile companies say net neutrality threatens their returns on investment in 5G

A coalition of almost 20 major telecoms providers, including BT, Ericsson, Nokia, Orange, Telefonica, Deutsche Telekom and Vodafone, have offered to roll out 5G networks across Europe, if the EU weakens its open internet rules.

The group has drawn up a 5G manifesto', in which they promise to start extensive tests of 5G technology across Europe by 2018, and launch 5G on a commercial scale in at least one city in every EU member state by 2020.

However, the telecoms companies argued net neutrality regulation will involve "dangers" harming returns on investment, and want to see the rules softened.

Net neutrality is the principle that internet service providers (ISPs) should treat all data equally, and not discriminate or apply different charges, regardless of the content or user.

Advertisement
Advertisement - Article continues below
Advertisement - Article continues below

In their 5G manifesto, the telcos argue: "The EU must reconcile the need for open internet [net neutrality] with pragmatic rules that foster innovation. The telecom industry warns that current net neutrality guidelines create significant uncertainties around 5G return on investment.

"Investments are therefore likely to be delayed unless regulators take a positive stance on innovation and stick to it."

The European Commission rejected amendments aimed at strengthening net neutrality when the legislation was passed last year, and the Commission's digital economy chief, Gunther Oettinger, has expressed his support of the new manifesto.

"I very much welcome the 5G Manifesto and discussions today with the high-level industry group," he said. "These will help us focus on the key levers to ensure European digital leadership in 5G. I will come forward with a 5G Action Plan in the autumn."

While 5G networks are not yet a reality, the technology is expected to have a major role to play in the development of autonomous cars, personal healthcare, transport, smart cities, and other areas, such as media.

Featured Resources

Digitally perfecting the supply chain

How new technologies are being leveraged to transform the manufacturing supply chain

Download now

Three keys to maximise application migration and modernisation success

Harness the benefits that modernised applications can offer

Download now

Your enterprise cloud solutions guide

Infrastructure designed to meet your company's IT needs for next-generation cloud applications

Download now

The 3 approaches of Breach and Attack Simulation technologies

A guide to the nuances of BAS, helping you stay one step ahead of cyber criminals

Download now
Advertisement

Recommended

Visit/strategy/28115/the-pros-and-cons-of-net-neutrality
Business strategy

The pros and cons of net neutrality

4 Nov 2019

Most Popular

Visit/business-strategy/public-sector/354608/uk-gov-launches-ps300000-sen-edtech-initiative
public sector

UK gov launches £300,000 SEN EdTech initiative

22 Jan 2020
Visit/operating-systems/25802/17-windows-10-problems-and-how-to-fix-them
operating systems

17 Windows 10 problems - and how to fix them

13 Jan 2020
Visit/business-strategy/mergers-and-acquisitions/354602/xerox-to-nominate-directors-to-hps-board-reports
mergers and acquisitions

Xerox to nominate directors to HP's board – reports

22 Jan 2020
Visit/web-browser/30394/what-is-http-error-503-and-how-do-you-fix-it
web browser

What is HTTP error 503 and how do you fix it?

7 Jan 2020