updated 01:05 pm EDT, Fri April 10, 2009
EU to undo VoIP blocks?
The European Commission is considering a measure to force acceptance of VoIP by cellphone carriers, reports say. The EU's telecoms commissioner, Viviane Reding, has called for the EU to undo arbitrary obstacles to "innovative services" on cellphones; a draft of the VoIP measure is thought to already be completed, but still unfinished due to a lack of precise wording. Current rules permit each country to decide what is blocked on the Internet.
The proposed plan may be directed explicitly towards Germany's Deutsche Telekom, whose T-Mobile subsidiary has refused to allow any form of VoIP software on its network; this includes the Skype app for the iPhone, despite the software's legal availability through the German iTunes Store. Deutsche Telekom has cited a risk of excessive bandwidth consumption, but it is generally believed that the anti-VoIP measures are aimed at protecting older revenue models. The company could face antitrust charges as a result, writes German newspaper Handelsblatt.