Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Gordon's new distraction - a new telecoms/broadband policy?

Rumor has it that Stephen Carter, Gordon's SpAd and ex-Ofcom supremo, summonsed all the big hitters in the telecoms industry to meet Gordon last week. Apparently the "invite" went out at 7pm on Thursday for a 7am meeting on Friday. The subject of the discussions still hasn't filtered out on the subject of the meeting to this humble telecoms engineer so I can only speculate.

So why would a beleaguered PM want to meet senior telecoms managers, and I mean senior, at such short notice when he is facing a meltdown in the local elections, the loss of the London Mayor, disquiet and almost rebellion over his own tax policies when he was Chancellor and now a possible rebellion over 42 days detention? Could it be free internet for the poor? More Internet? Cheaper calls?

Whatever it is he isn't going to get much joy out of the telecoms industry:

Mobile operators are pissed off that there is going to be another auction for spectrum is the so called 3G expansion band which they don't need yet. They are also pissed off with the EU because they are getting another kicking over roaming, this time SMS

ISP's are pissed off they are expected to find the Capex to support the growth in Internet usage caused by BBC's iPlayer

The large ISP's are bleeding because of the land grab for more customers, and this means the MNO's as well, and through their own stupidity of the race to the bottom over "free" Internet.

No, the telecom's industry isn't really the place for Gordon to be looking for some sort of pancea to his unpopularity.

Anyway, telecoms is such a long term game that he will be lucky for there to be any noticeable difference by the next election, let alone after the (hopeful) debacle that is going to happen to him in the polls tomorrow.


Vindico said...

Gordon is good at running up dead-end alleys!
p.s. I see the mobile operators have brought the topic of a legal challenge abck onto the table re the 2.5Ghz auction. Should be interesting.

The Great Simpleton said...

The rumours haven't been attributed to any specific operator but none of them want to have another auction on their balance sheets this year. Ofcom will have been preparing for this so it should get intersting.

My money's on a delay, but that's a personal view.