Google starts pushing for network neutrality in India

Google is known for their search engine but the company is also a huge player in the online services market.

And for web services to succeed, consumers have to get unrestricted access to the internet.

Network neutrality comes into play here and Google wants India to be one market that ensures that there are no restrictions to online activities for the web user.

The company has written to Telecom Regulatory Authority of India asking them to ensure that Indian consumers get unrestricted access to the web.

Google said: “An open Internet is good for Indian consumers and businesses. To unlock the full potential of a national broadband network and the Internet access it will deliver, it is crucial to implement policies that maintain the Internet’s fundamentally open, neutral, non-discriminatory nature.”

The company added: “Keeping the Internet open is about more than Google; it’s about the next Google – and making sure that the Internet remains an open ecosystem, where new ideas can succeed, and new business models can flourish on their own merits. Indeed, Google’s story is the story of myriad other companies that have become global brands in a matter of years or even months. Skype went from an Estonian start-up to being a major competitor in international calling. Facebook went from being a small college project to being a platform used by millions. In designing the regulatory environment for a National Broadband Network, TRAI should consider the ways in which broadband providers’ practices can threaten the fundamental openness of the Internet. Consideration should be given to promoting a regulatory environment that protects user choice, competition and innovation on the Internet.”

Fair usage policy might not be related to network neutrality but it is seriously hampering the customers from making best use of the web. Most India based internet service providers are now using the FUP excuse to restrict high speed access to the net. In the end, customer ends up with 256kbps connectivity which is not fast enough to access popular legitimate online services like Skype and YouTube.

We can only hope that TRAI looks into it and ensures that high speed internet access does not become a luxury for Indian customers. Airtel is one company that has been misusing the 256kbps is broadband mantra from the old specification from TRAI.

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