Meet the Hybrid Internet – the FCC’s Net Neutrality compromise

FCC's Hybrid Internet plan

The Hybrid Internet – Don’t try this at home

In what seems to be an attempt to outmaneuver the many stake holders (or please everyone), the FCC is leaning towards splitting the Internet into parts.  The one part is the underlying transport “back-end” connection between carriers and content providers.  The second part is the retail” connections between carriers and consumers, according to a report on the Wall Street Journal late Thursday.  The plan sees the FCC have the power to regulate the “back-end” including deals between operators and content providers.

The Hybrid Internet

From the WSJ ..

The proposal would leave the door open for broadband providers to offer specialized services for, say, videogamers or online video providers, which require a particularly large amount of bandwidth. The proposal would also allow the commission to explore usage-based pricing at some point, in which consumers are charged based on how much data they use and companies are able to subsidize traffic to their websites or applications.

While the FCC still believes there should be room for such deals, its latest plan would shift the burden to the broadband providers to prove that the arrangements would be beneficial to consumers and equally available to any company that would like to participate. FCC officials believe reclassification would put them on much stronger legal footing to block such deals when they are anticompetitive.

The Hybrid Internet plan will most definitely be confusing for everyone and may indeed make no one happy.  So far the information release/leaked leaves more questions than answers.  Still no word on how all of this will affect Mobile operators.  There is always the distinct possibility that the FCC will lose another legal challenge to take us all back to square one.   Thing is for sure, continued uncertainty will not benefit anyone in the industry.

More Here… [WSJ] subscription required

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