TRAI Wants Transparent Pricing From Telcos; Asks For Sharing Speed Testing Methods!

TRAI wants the speed testing sites to reveal their testing methods and is pushing for more transparent pricing from telecoms.


TRAI Pushing For A Transparent Tariff

As per incoming reports, it seems that Telecom Regulatory Authority of India or TRAI is pushing for fairness, and transparency in all aspects of the multi-billion telecom business.

While they want speed testing portals to share and reveal their exact methodology for calculating mobile Internet speeds, they will soon release an order for transparent pricing structure, which would be applicable for all telcos.

What exactly triggered these moves by TRAI?

TRAI: Show Us Speed Calculation Methods!

Yesterday, TRAI released a new consultation paper, which deals with the issue of measuring mobile internet speed.

And as per the findings of the consultation paper, it is clear that the regulatory authority wants to remove all ambiguity and wants to bring transparency.

TRAI said,

“Speed of internet connection is the most important and fundamental metric to measure broadband experience, especially since 4G LTE networks’ penetration in India has increased and data consumption pattern has undergone a massive change..”

The matter of speed calculation has become a major issue, after US tester Ookla hailed Airtel as the fastest mobile services provider in India, while TRAI’s MySpeed app found Jio to be fastest.

While Ookla has maintained that they are neutral, and their speed tests are based on 25 million tests taken on 3.7 million unique devices; Jio had sued Ookla for misinterpreting their data and causing them damage.

The case was later rejected by the Court.

TRAI said, “Empowerment of the user to know the typical speed available in his/her location of choice becomes essential.”

In fact, the methodology used by TRAI’s MySpeed app is also under a cloud, as analysts have been doubting their ‘crowdsource model’ to determine the average speed of telco providers.

TRAI: We Need More Transparency In Tariff Plans

Meanwhile, reports are coming in that TRAI may soon announce a transparent tariff rule for all telecom operators.

This move came after Telecom Dispute Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) ordered TRAI to act against Jio for extending their 7-day limit of Welcome Offer to several weeks, thereby violating TRAI’s rules.

While TRAI plans to challenge TDSAT’s ‘order’, they want to bring in rules which stops any telecom operator to create and advertise predatory pricing and capture market share.

One of the officials from TRAI said,

“The regulator (TRAI) is an independent body which makes rules for the sector, and the TDSAT is well within its rights to uphold or quash any rules… But it cannot direct the regulator to make certain rules. For that, there’s a due consultation process which has been followed and rules cannot be made on the fly. It (the TDSAT order) may well be challenged”.

TDSAT also wants to regulate the term ‘free’ in advertisements by telecom operators, as it clearly confuses the consumer, and create a false image of services being actually free, when it is not.

TDSAT has asked the regulatory authority to form benchmarks, and regulations so that tariff becomes more transparent, and it doesn’t violate any rules.

TDSAT in their order said,

“No benchmark or guideline has been provided by Trai as to when a below cost tariff by a significant market power would become predatory, warranting action,”

We will keep you updated as more details come in.

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