Voice over Internet Protocol
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Voice over Internet Protocol






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  • PATS: Publicly Available Telephone Service (same as PSTN)

Voice over Internet Protocol Voice over Internet Protocol Presentation Transcript

  • Comparative Telecommunications Law Spring, 2007 Prof. Karl Manheim 13: VoIP Copyright © 2007
  • Basics of Internet Telephony
    • Different network than the PSTN
      • May use some of same physical infrastructure
        • PSTN is circuit-switched; Internet is packet-switched
  • VoIP Technology
    • Packet Switching
      • Analog voice signal converted to digital signal, which is then divided into data “packets”
      • Packets are sent over Internet like other data
      • Reverse process at destination computer
    • Resilient VoIP problems
      • Latency
      • Echo
      • DTMF propagation
    FCC website on IP-enabled services
  • VoIP Technology
    • Voice ≠ POTS telephony
    • In an end-to-end world, applications are defined at the edges
    • Innovation happens
  • VoIP Business Applications
  • VoIP Technology
    • IP Applications
      • All Internet traffic is TCP/IP
        • Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol
        • Established by IETF (ITU?)
    • Benefits of IP
      • Use of existing open networks @ lower cost
      • Scalable; efficient
      • Limitless variety of applications
      • Geographic independence
    • Skype
      • C-C (free) C-PSTN (traffic-sensitive fee) PSTN-C (nts)
  • VoIP Economics
    • Internet telephony bypasses telcos,
      • No interconnection obligations
        • Exception: VoIP call from or to standard telephone (e.g., “Computer-to-Phone”, “Phone-to-Phone”)
        • Termination charges apply
      • No Universal Service surcharges (until recently)
    • Competitive pressure on telcos
      • Telcos demand compensation from ISPs
      • Telcos urge regulation/licensing of VoIP
      • Special problem where telco is state-owned
  • VoIP Regulation
    • Regulatory issues generally < FCC fact sheet >
      • Internet not under NRA jurisdiction
        • Advent of unregulated services, displacing regulated ones, is disruptive; may spur general deregulation
      • VoIP defies national boundaries
        • Users are “nomadic” whenever on Internet
      • Numbering (E.164 -> ENUM)
        • t E lephone NU mber M apping; number portability
      • Emergency geolocation (911 / 112)
      • Universal Service
      • Law Enforcement Access/Interception
  • VoIP Regulation in US
    • Pulver.com Free World Dialup (2004)
      • C-C VoIP is
        • Not telecommunications
          • VoIP is merely an application (such as a browser, email)
          • Not a transmission service
        • Not a telecommunications service
          • VoIP providers don’t offer telecommunications
          • No common carrier obligations
        • An information service
          • capability for generating, acquiring, storing, transforming, processing, retrieving, utilizing info via telecommunications
      • Therefore, not regulated by Comm’ns Act.
  • VoIP Regulation in US
    • NPRM: IP-Enabled Services (3/10/2004)
      • Focus on VoIP
        • Offered by telcos and facilities-based telecom cos.
        • Also by Session Initiated Protocol ( SIP ) providers
          • Signaling (ring) used by VoIP, video-conferencing, etc.
      • Beyond VoIP
        • TTY, VPN, IPTV, VOD, ( VoIP Summit – 5/7/2004)
    • First Report and Order (6/3/2005)
      • Limited to E911 service; Wiretap functionality
    • Telecom Act of 2005/06 (pending)
      • Local number portability; Univ.Svc. funding
  • VoIP Regulation in US
    • Order re AT&T Access Charges (4/21/2004)
      • AT&T uses Internet to route interexchange calls
        • LEC -> VoIP -> LEC
        • Bypasses IXC and IXC obligation to compensate destination LEC to terminate calls, but otherwise looks identical to wireline telephony (incl. CPE)
        • So-called “Phone-to-Phone”
      • No reason to treat termination any differently
        • AT&T must pay access charges
        • Order doesn’t apply to Computer-to-Computer VoIP
  • VoIP Regulation in US
    • Order in Vonage VoIP Services (11/9/2004)
      • LECs normally subject to state PUC regulation
        • Joint State Federal Board & Separation requirements
      • C-C VoIP bypasses LECs; therefore not subject to state regulation
        • E.g., E911 services
    • Order in Time-Warner Cable (1 Mar 2007)
      • Wholesale Comm’n Carrier providing VoIP
        • Entitled to ILEC interconnection per § 251(a)(b)
        • Intercon’n to PSTN needed for full VoIP deployment
      • Number portability and resources
  • VoIP Regulation in US
    • E911 Services
      • Interconnected VoIP E911 order (6/3/05) < link >
      • Joint FCC/NARUC Task Force (July 2005)
      • IVoIP compliance required by 11/28/06 < link >
        • Appeal pending before DC Court of Appeals
  • VoIP Regulation in EU
    • EC v. Italy (ECJ 2000)
      • Does Open Networks Provision apply to VoIP?
        • ONP: Council Directive 90/387/EEC
          • Open Access; standards; interoperability
      • No, VoIP is not a voice telephony service
    • VoIP under Telecoms Package (2002)
      • Telecom should be technology neutral
        • No licensing of VoIP (Authorization Directive)
        • But many FPTN obligations apply
          • E.g., if VoIP is marketed as a Publicly Available Telephone Service (PATS) in UK - Voice over Broadband (VoB)
  • VoIP Regulation in EU
    • DGIS Consultation Document (14 June 2004)
      • Application of Telecom. Framework Directives
        • NRA authorization not required for Electronic Communications Services (Internet services)
      • Commission takes “light touch” reg. approach
        • VoIP contributes to creation of single European mkt
        • VoIP providers may be able to compete with PATS
          • Still investigating impact on telephony markets
    • Current Issues < EU fact sheet >
      • Numbering/portability; emergency svcs; Un.Svc
        • See European Regulators’ Group white paper
  • VoIP Regulation in EU
    • Recent Developments
      • Differentiation between VoB and VoIP
        • VoB: as a replacement for standard telephony
        • Subject to ex ante regulation in appropriate cases
      • EC approves ARCEP (FR) decision not to impose ex ante regulation on VoB (2005) < link >
        • Robust competition; FPTN elements regulated
      • EC approves BNetzA (DE) decision to impose ex ante regulation on VDSL (very high speed broadband) < link >
        • May affect market for VoIP and VoB services
  • VoIP Regulation in Asia
    • China
      • Ministry of Information Industry (MII)
        • Not regulated, at least if bypasses PSTN
        • Very competitive; many calling cards use VoIP
    • Singapore
      • Info-Communications Development Auth. (IDA)
        • Interconnection req’d; reg. forbearance; no E911
    • Korea
      • Ministry of Information & Communications (MCI)
        • Treatment/regulation as basic telephony service
  • VoIP Regulation - other countries
    • Canada
      • Can. Radiotelevision & Telecom C’mm’n (CRTC)
        • IP services using PSTN/telephone numbers are subject to PSTN regulation
    • Mexico
      • VoIP treated same as voice telephony
    • UK
      • Office of Communications (OFCOM)
        • Reg. forbearance, access to number pool, no E911
    • Other Countries < link >