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May 13, 2016

Will Video Basic Service Be on the Agenda for 2020?

Nothing frustrates me more than the way we talk past each other. Carriers and Over the Top operators seem to think they have two different networks. I was sharing with one of my friends the amazing demo GENBAND did where they turned on an entire carrier network while giving a keynote. The friend came back and pointed out that it was not end-to-end.

I am not sure this is a valid complaint anymore. I think availability is guaranteed in a world where Apple iPhone sales plateaued. The issue is no longer whether access is available; it’s about whether it is affordable and “open.” 

The “Open” issue hit me while at GENBAND Perspectives16 when I realized in talking to the panelists that it was entirely possible for video calling to be just included in the next generation of basic services from the local carriers.

Now up to this point, I felt the carriers were in trouble, because video was actually very good on over the top services. The codecs are superior to the legacy carriers supported with ISDN, and the compression was amazing.

Gone are the days of patchwork squares regaining composure.

While the end points of black telephones still dominate the home, the home probably has other end points that can be identified to the number and video calls can become part of the service.

I have heard that for some carriers the addition of SMS is now offered on their basic phone service, which has to find a way to bypass the black phone to work. 

The bottom line is the core network is capable of providing the delivery; the only thing that stops anyone is the end points.

Now comes the tricky part. Does the addition of SMS and Video become an enhanced feature?  Or is it included in the price of the service? And if it’s included in the price of the service, does that make it regulated?

I have a feeling the next administration is going to have to deal with these questions.

The last one brought in all the right people, but the agenda was never set. Hopefully the next administration will have an agenda in telecommunications and the Internet.


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