The French Telecoms Federation, with which Free is associated for this request, goes back to the niche to make the digital giants pay, by estimating the costs generated by their activities for the operators.
The subject is again on the table. In a note sent to Brussels in October, the federation bringing together Orange, Bouygues and SFR again calls for a financial contribution to the “GAFA”. If it is not part of the FFT, Free has also joined in the request to the European Union.
The activities of Apple, Amazon, Facebook, Netflix or even Google thus generate “for the four operators, the costs generated by the six users identified on mobile are estimated at nearly 1.5 billion euros per year, and around 500 million euros on fixed networks ”. A sum actively claimed by operators for a fairly simple reason: these players are the most bandwidth-intensive. For example, Netflix consumed nearly 20% of traffic in France in 2021 and 51% of traffic to Orange, Free, SFR and Bouygues Telecom subscribers came from the five major content providers Netflix, Google, Akamai (Disney+) , Facebook and Amazon.
If the operators do not intend to set up a barrier for new entrants, they nevertheless intend to determine a threshold of use of the network from which it will be necessary to pay. The challenge is to assess the traffic volume of each platform during peak hours, ie from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. and to calculate the average over 12 months to bill the players using a lot of bandwidth.
The subject is also already examined by the European Union, with for example a broad consultation addressing this subject, but not only from next year. For Thierry Breton, European Commissioner for the Internal Market and Digital, the subject should not be restricted solely to digital. ” We have to wonder if our network regulation, thought out at the time of the opening up of copper networks to competition, is still appropriate, as the metaverse and its massive data flows are looming.he explained last September.
Until now more discreet on the issue, Iliad, parent company of Free and 6th largest telecommunications group in Europe, commented on this desire during Free Communities Day on September 24th. “If they want to give us money, we always agree. The consumption is huge for several Netflix services it is counted in terabits, Youtube has the same problem and even Twitch is getting huge” said Xavier Niel, founder of Free.
There is also net neutrality. Last June, 34 European NGOs working to defend freedoms reminded the European Commission of the importance ” to allow Internet users to use their operator’s bandwidth as they wish: for Netflix, YouTube, Facebook, or a small local site“. The risk would then be that the operators, despite their intentions, would favor the big content providers who would pay accordingly. For Thomas Reynaud, CEO of Iliad, “Free has always defended net neutrality and we believe that a balance will have to be found to preserve it above all else”.
Source: l’Informé via Frandroid
This article was taken from the Univers FreeBox website