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Telecommunications Spring Newsletter

AUTHOR(S): Helen Kelly
PRACTICE AREA GROUP: Telecommunications
DATE: 07.05.2015

Compliance remains a key priority for ComReg with formal findings of non-compliance issued against several entities and investigations launched into others.

ComReg consults on additional measures to improve disabled users’ access to communications services.

The hearing date for Vodafone Ireland Ltd’s (“Vodafone’s”) judicial review action against ComReg arising out of Three Ireland’s acquisition of Telefónica Ireland (“O2 Ireland”) edges closer – with a 6 day hearing set down in the Commercial Court, commencing 16 June 2015.

eircom makes good on ‘out of court’ settlement with ComReg for fixed line service outage refunds

On 2 April 2015, ComReg published an Information Notice confirming details on the numbers and value of refunds made by eircom to fixed line customers who suffered service outages during December 2013-30 April 2014.  ComReg has called on eircom’s wholesale customers to pass on the relevant refunds to their own retail customers.

Round-up of recent non-compliance cases – Vodafone & Imagine Networks among those that feel the heat over unclear customer contract terms

ComReg impresses the need for clearer customer terms & conditions with Vodafone and Imagine Networks.

PRS provider Dragonfly Mobile Ltd feels the pinch as ComReg secures refunds of €390,000

ComReg has recently issued a press release confirming that it has secured a total of €390,000 worth of refunds to more than 12,000 customers of Dragonfly Mobile Ltd (“Dragonfly”) arising out of Dragonfly’s breach of the Premium Rate Services (“PRS”) Code of Practice.

ComReg remains committed to improving disabled end-user access – focus on Text Relay Services

Having identified certain gaps in its recent 2014 package of measures to ensure equivalence of disabled end-user access, ComReg is now considering requiring all telcos - and not just eircom - to offer a Text Relay Service (“TRS”), and for the service to be extended out to mobile as well as fixed line services. Submissions are invited by 17:00 today, 7 May 2015.

ComReg helps consumers keep an eye on their finances - Preliminary consultation on Selective Call Barring (“SCB”)

ComReg issues a preliminary consultation on how best to enable consumers to control costs with the possibility of requiring all undertakings – and not just eircom – to provide SCB facilities. Inputs to the preliminary consultation are invited by 17:00 on Friday 8 May 2015.

Update on Consultation on new spectrum awards in the 2.6 GHz band, 700 MHz, 1.4 GHz, 2.3 GHz and 3.6 GHz bands

ComReg confirms general consensus from industry that all five bands should be included in any upcoming radio spectrum awards – although not necessarily in the same award process.

ComReg goes back to the drawing board and consults on extension of obligation on eircom to maintain the National Directory Database (“NDD”)

Following withdrawal of interest from BT Communications Ireland Ltd (“BT”) ComReg is now consulting on whether the current direction to eircom to maintain the NDD should be extended from 30 June 2015 to end June 2018.

eircom applies for funding for provision of universal service - 2013/2014

ComReg confirms it has received an application from eircom to cover its provision of the universal service for the period 2013-2014.  eircom is claiming a net cost of €11.3 million. ComReg will decide on eircom’s application in due course.

Further delay on Mobile Termination Rates (MTR) model

Despite indications last year that ComReg intended to issue a final decision on the draft Bottom-Up Pure LRIC model in Spring 2015, an extension for submissions has been granted until 7 May 2015.  According to ComReg’s Information Notice the extension was granted ‘following a request from industry’.

It’s all about the figures – ComReg Quarterly Key Data Report Q4 2014 published

On 12 March 2015, ComReg published its Quarterly Key Data Report for the final quarter in 2014.

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