Commissioners’ Remarks
Panel I
Panel II



Kevin Werbach (Supernova):

bulletThe communication network has become multi-application, even though the network is just a transport network and is applications agnostic.
bulletEven the telephony network is applications agnostic – it supports human voice, fax and data. The applications are realized only at the end points. If this feels far fetched, replace POTS access technology with ISDN, but keep everything the same. Now ask the same question.
bulletThe applications are realized only at the end-points.
bulletMany applications use voice as part of their communications, but may not be “telephony” in the traditional sense – to wit, if the gamers communicate is it voice? Should they have support for E911?
bulletVoIP is not just for arbitrage.


Charles Giancarlo (Cisco):

bulletIP is more reliable than PSTN
bulletCan offer new features like multiple lines, phone numbers, IM, Presence and Push-to-talk
bulletService providers’ revenue will go down.
bulletThere will be a corresponding decline for VoIP service providers as well. Indeed, the revenue of these service providers is inversely proportional to the size of the VoIP users. There are no purple minutes; at most there could only be purple database dips. VoIP is a product and not a service.


Jeff Pulver (pulver.com):

bullet“Telephony” is not the only thing realized by IP Communication (so don’t apply all the voice regulations on it)
bulletSocial policies can be addressed by the industry (self regulation)
bulletThe industry needs to address many open issues (regulations will stifle the innovative spirit)


John Hodulik (UBS):

bulletAccess revenue is declining ~8% per year.
bulletInvestors will be hesitant till the regulatory picture clears.


John Billock (Time Warner):

bulletWilling to play within a regulatory regime.
bulletViewing it as a facilities-based service
bulletThat means it is a capital intensive game; no need to worry about price wars too much. We should ensure that broadband facilities providers do not do things that ensure that only they can offer voice service. Such a trend is already being used by at least one service provider.


Follow-up Discussion:

Some interesting questions were raised by the commissioners soliciting thought provoking responses.

bulletPowell asked whether regulation will drive the service providers offshore there by driving economic activity away from this country. Pulver replied that since these service providers need to interconnect to our PSTN network, the economic activity can not totally disappear.
bulletIf I haven’t misinterpreted, this is an unexpected remark. Since the need for interconnection to PSTN will diminish as VoIP takes off, this reassurance is not satisfactory.
bulletAbernathy wanted to know the impact rising VoIP will have on existing players. Hodulik responded saying that incumbents will invest only in new services. Pulver observed that IXCs and other LD companies will be affected before RBOCs feel the pinch.
bulletIt is a shame that incumbent vendors are not addressing this need. Probably he was thinking that RBOCs can provide “parasite” service and mitigate the downside.
bulletCopps made an observation that since broadband is unprofitable, worrying about VoIP is not that important.
bulletI am sure I didn’t get the point; otherwise, the panelists would have made a vigorous rebuttal.


Copyright © 2003 Moca Educational Products, Inc.