Thanks in part to smart phones like the iPhone and Android, carriers across Europe are straining to meet demands.
Despite the fact that they are charging smartphone users more money than the average feature phone (aka dumb phone), apparently it isn’t enough to sustain their networks.
Unfortunately it seems as if they’ve set their sites upon two tech giants with plenty of cash to spare.
As mobile and Web companies add videos, music and games, operators includingÂ France Telecom SA,Â Telecom Italia SpA andÂ Vodafone Group Plc want a new deal that would require content providers like Apple and Google to pay fees linked to usage. […]
Richard, who addressed the issue at the â€œLe Webâ€ conference in Paris today, has joined Telecom Italia CEOÂ Franco Bernabe and Telefonica SA CEOÂ Cesar Alierta in what could turn into a cold war with Web companies. As more consumers access the Internet on mobile devices, the cost of building bigger networks may outstrip revenue growth for wireless operators, slicing their return on investment. (Bloomberg)
Forcing Google and Apple to pay would obviously be bad business as it would only drive up the costs of the devices themselves as Apple will pass on the costs to the customer (forcing Google to pay would be harder since they give Android away for free).
What’s worrisome is that if carriers are able to force tech giants to pay for infrastructure improvements, then it might inspire American carriers to do something similar now that net neutrality is dead in all but name only.
If supporting data hogging users is expensive, carriers need to simply charge those data hogging users more money instead of collectively punishing everyone else instead.