European cable networks in France, Spain, Finland, the Netherlands and Belgium have taken the lead in the launch of “next generation” technology infrastructure designed to deliver high-speed broadband connections.
Trade association Cable Europe said members Welho (Finland), Numericable in France and Belgium, and UPC in the Netherlands were all rolling out speeds of 100 Mbps, while others including ONO in Spain were building on speeds in excess of 50 Mbps (see Broadband TV News passim).
“This is a major step forward to deliver ground-breaking internet services to cable consumers, creating a richer media experience. Cable continues to take the lead in next generation network investments, inspiring the competition to follow,” said Manuel Kohnstamm, president of Cable Europe.
The association has called on the Council of Ministers to maintain the existing light touch regulation of the cable industry, and to reconsider proposals including changing access arrangements to cable infrastructure that could prove anti-competitive.
“The revision of the telecom rules should not jeopardise investments in competing next generation platforms,” said Caroline van Weede, managing director of Cable Europe. “The industry’s ability to continue investing in new services such as high-speed internet depends on creating the right regulatory framework allowing all operators to flourish.”
Cable Europe said it supported efforts by the European Commission to provide better oversight of national telecommunications regulators in order to provide a level playing field.