Telecom's VDSL2 service escapes regulation

High speed copper service yet to be offered commercially

Telecom Wholesale’s high-speed VDSL2 service will not be subject to regulation, the Commerce Commission announced today.

However the service, which has been in trial phase for over a year, has yet to be offered commercially. In November Computerworld reported the hold up was due to another regulatory issue – Telecom Wholesale’s insistence that the VDSL2 service be taken up by access seekers with POTS – Plain Old Telephone Service. In other words, access seekers couldn't purchase a data connection and run their own voice service.

But Telecom Wholesale has since told its customers that it will offer both 'clothed' and 'naked' VDSL2 in its newsletter The Informer. "We will move from soft launch to full launch once we have met our success criteria and are satisfied that all our systems and processes are operating as to the level required to support full launch," the newsletter reads.

In a statement today Telecommunications Commissioner Ross Patterson says the Commission has decided not to regulate the service because, “it incorporates a number of features not included in the regulated unbundled bitstream access service, and it is appropriate that the market determines the price for this enhanced service.”

“The Commission is satisfied that the new service has higher specifications (including an increase in minimum throughput and a minimum line speed warranty of 15 Mbps download and 5Mbps upload) that differentiate the new service from the regulated service. The Commission considers there are no grounds for a review under the Telecommunications Act, to consider extending regulation to the new service,” he says.

“There has been much debate about the willingness of consumers to pay for upgraded broadband services, and it is appropriate that the price is set by the market,” Patterson says.

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