Sunday, June 21, 2009

Australia: the regulator is to drop regulation of ISDN and digital data access service

[accc] The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has decided to cease regulation of the digital data access service (DDAS) and integrated services digital network (ISDN) after 30 June 2009.

Acting Chairman Mr Peter Kell said that in balancing the objectives of regulation, the ACCC was not satisfied that continued declaration of these services would be in the long term interests of end users.

"The ACCC considers that removing regulated access will encourage the general move toward other, better, technologies such as xDSL and wholesale transmission," Mr Kell said.

"This will occur through businesses taking up the new technologies and greater investment in more efficient and cost effective services."

The decision affirms the ACCC's longstanding guidance to the industry.

Twelve months ago the ACCC put access seekers on notice that it was likely to remove regulation of these legacy services after allowing a reasonable transition period for end-users to migrate to alternative services.

While the ACCC recently proposed to extend the declarations for six key fixed-line services, the ACCC considers DDAS/ISDN are outdated technologies that are increasingly being withdrawn and replaced by other services offering higher capacity and faster speeds.

The ACCC's decision to remove regulation of the DDAS and ISDN in regional areas follows its 2006 decision to cease regulating these services in CBD and metro areas.

The digital data access service is a service for the domestic carriage of data. The service can combine the use of a customer access line with management to ensure high quality data transmission. The DDAS service was deemed to be declared in 1997.

The integrated services digital network was first declared in 1998 and is used for the carriage of information such as voice, data, high quality sound, text, still images and video over the public switched telephone network (PSTN).

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