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 Friday, January 19, 2007

The ITU workshop The Future of Voice held on the 15th and 16th of January 2007 in Geneva, Switzerland looked, inter alia, at the voice traffic and revenue trends in the last fifteen years.

On the global level, local and national long-distance reported telephone minutes per capita were growing in the 1990s and stably falling since the beginning of the new decade. A notable exception of the general rule is the US experiencing continuous growth in the number of local minutes: in 15 years, the number of local minutes per capita has grown four-fold. The international outgoing traffic grew significantly over the last fifteen years: in the Republic of Korea, in 2005 it was 15 times more intensive than in 1990, in the US – five times. Even though, since the beginning of the new century, the international voice traffic tends to slowly decrease.

If we look at the global telecom revenue, we will see the stable global expansion of the sector over the whole period. Voice revenue as a percentage of the total remains stable, while the traffic generated by users has doubled. In 2004, as in 1991, voice constituted more than 80% of telecom revenue surpassing, by far, income from any other source. In the coming years, voice is expected to stay strong driven by falling prices and increasing volumes of traffic.

What are the drivers behind these trends? Enlarged number of users, competition and market liberalization, enhanced innovation and emerging alternative communication platforms, migration to all-IP environment or all of these and more? The dynamics of development of the telecom sector is driven today by multiple factors in an increasingly complex environment both in developed and developing countries. Pressures are forcing change at different levels – market, regulation, type of technology, framed by the shift towards the emerging global economy.

For more insights of the debate on the future of voice, see the complete presentation of Tim Kelly, Head and Jaroslaw Ponder, Policy Analyst of the Strategy & Policy Unit of ITU.

More presentations and background materials on the subject can be found at the Future of Voice website.

Friday, January 19, 2007 2:59:50 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Thursday, January 18, 2007

ITU held a workshop entitled The Future of Voice on the 15th and 16th of January 2007 at its headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland. This workshop organized under the ITU New Initiatives Programme focused on the role of voice communications in the future ubiquitous network environment.

For a long time, voice services have been the principal driver of telecommunication revenue and will probably continue to drive demand for some time. Nevertheless, it is becoming harder to sustain traditional models of per-minute pricing for voice as the service is increasingly carried over data channels that are priced on a flat-rate basis. Some of the key issues discussed during the event include:

• How are voice services evolving and what does this mean for users, providers and the telecommunication industry as a whole?
• How will fixed, mobile and internet-based phone services converge?
• How does messaging, gaming, multimedia fit in?
• Are voice services of the future most likely to be billed by the minute, by volume, or on a flat rate basis?
• What regulatory freedom should be given to operators to bundle voice with other services (e.g., multiple play: voice, video, internet and mobility)?
• What form of licensing, if any, will be necessary for voice service providers?
• What will be the new business models and revenue streams?
• What are the residual universal service obligations (e.g. emergency calls) that should be imposed on voice providers?

All presentations and background papers as well as a web archive of the event (video and audio) are available on the workshop website.

Thursday, January 18, 2007 1:43:17 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Several Internet-related Decisions and Resolutions were adopted at the ITU 2006 Plenipotentiary Conference. These include:

  • DECISION GT-PLEN/A (Antalya, 2006): Fourth World Telecommunication Policy Forum
  • RESOLUTION 101 (Rev. Antalya, 2006): Internet Protocol-based networks
  • RESOLUTION 102 (Rev. Antalya, 2006): ITU’s role with regard to international public policy issues pertaining to the Internet and the management of Internet resources, including domain names and addresses
  • RESOLUTION 130 (Rev. Antalya, 2006): Strengthening the role of ITU in building confidence and security in the use of information and communication technologies
  • RESOLUTION 133 (Rev. Antalya, 2006): Role of administrations of Member States in the management of internationalized (multilingual) domain names
  • RESOLUTION GT-PLEN/7 (Antalya, 2006): Study on the participation of all relevant stakeholders in the activities of the Union related to the World Summit on the Information Society

The text of these resolutions and decisions can be found here.

Thursday, January 18, 2007 11:09:20 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, January 15, 2007

The ITU has just published a Survey on Radio Spectrum Management, available for download here (.pdf format).

The survey was prepared by Marco Obiso, Cristina Bueti, Rochi Koirala and Lorenzo Mele of the Strategy and Policy Unit (ITU).

Together with other background papers will form part of the input material for an international ITU/FUB Workshop on Market Mechanisms for Spectrum Management to be held in Geneva (Switzerland) from 22-23 January 2007.

The Advance Programme for the workshop is now on-line, and will be regularly updated.

More information about the Workshop can be found here.

More information about the Shaping Tomorrow’s Networks Programme can be found here.

Monday, January 15, 2007 8:17:45 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, December 18, 2006

A presentation entitled Update on ITU Cybersecurity and Countering Spam Activities (PDF), was made by Robert Shaw, Deputy Head, ITU Strategy and Policy Unit, at the 2nd Joint London Action Plan (LAP) - EU Contact Network of Spam Authorities (CNSA) meeting on 13-14 December in Brussels.

At the same event, Mark Sunner of MessageLabs gave a presentation entitled Security Landscape Update describing the latest kinds of security threats, including the emergence of a new peer-to-peer 'SpamThru' zombie botnet (Slide 7).

Monday, December 18, 2006 2:25:06 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Wednesday, December 13, 2006

A detailed presentation by Joe St. Sauver at a recent Messaging Anti-Abuse Working Group meeting in Toronto, Canada describes how spammers are now resorting to hijacking IP address blocks.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006 3:03:24 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, December 11, 2006

8 December 2006 At last week's ITU WORLD TELECOM FORUM in Hong Kong, China, a special event was held entitled Countering Spam Cooperation Agenda. The agenda with submitted presentations from the meeting is now available on the WSIS Action Line C5: Partnerships for Global Cybersecurity website.

Monday, December 11, 2006 5:06:47 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Saturday, December 09, 2006

ComputerWorld article describes Microsoft's battles with hackers: the software giant fights off more than 100,000 attacks every month.

[via Slashdot]

Saturday, December 09, 2006 10:57:05 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Wednesday, December 06, 2006

One of the Intenet's pioneers, Dr. Larry Roberts, gave a presentation yesterday at ITU World Telecom Forum 2006 in Hong Kong entitled Optimizing the Internet Quality of Service and Economics for the Digital Generation. Dr. Roberts discussed standardization work in the ITU on end-to-end QoS signalling to better deliver video over the Internet. In particular, he discussed the work on a new flow based, in-band signaling standard called Y.flowreq.

 

 

Wednesday, December 06, 2006 8:04:00 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, December 04, 2006

The eighth edition of the ITU Internet Reports, entitled "digital.life" was prepared especially for ITU TELECOM World 2006 (December 4-8 2006, Hong Kong)and is available now online. The report examines how innovation in digital technology is radically changing individual and societal lifestyles.

Chapter one: going digital outlines the meanings of "digital" and reflects on the many ways of being digital. Around one in every three people on the planet now carries a digital mobile phone around with them wherever they go. Globally, more hours are spent consuming digital media, such as the internet, than any analogue media, including television and radio. Digital technologies are transforming businesses and governments, and changing the ways we live and interact. We are witnessing what has been termed a “digital revolution”, which had its beginnings in the early 1980s and refers to the replacement of analogue devices and services with their digital successors. This technological shift has brought about considerable change in the human condition itself, especially in its socioeconomic and cultural aspects.

The transition from narrowband to broadband digital networks (figure below) is now well-advanced in the fixed-line world where there were some 216 million broadband subscribers across the world at the end of 2005, amounting to just over half the total number of internet subscribers and around one-fifth of total fixed lines.

As the world becomes increasingly digital, new challenges and important dilemmas arise for businesses and policy-makers. Private individuals, too, are faced with a bewildering number of choices for their information and communications needs.

If you are eager to discover more about these challenges as well as about the importance of being digital and digital ubiquity, you can download chapter one: going digital.

The full text of the report is available online at the digital.life website.  For more information about the report, contact lara.srivastava(a)itu.int.

Monday, December 04, 2006 2:52:42 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

In conjunction with the Forum at ITU TELECOM WORLD 2006, 4-8 December in Hong Kong, China, ITU is organizing a one day event on 8 December entitled "Countering Spam Cooperation Agenda". Key international and regional organizations involved in the fight against spam will gather to discuss greater collaborative efforts to combat spam and related threats. The event is open to all ITU TELECOM WORLD 2006 participants.

See the full ITU Press Release for the event here.

Monday, December 04, 2006 11:29:15 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Friday, December 01, 2006

The UK Office of Communications (Ofcom) has launched its new book "Communications - The Next Decade". It consists of a series of essays by academics, politicians and regulators that examine the effect of convergence on the communications sector and the authors come to some provocative conclusions.

The book is available for download as a pdf either in sections or in its entirety from the Ofcom website.

Friday, December 01, 2006 3:05:07 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Thursday, November 30, 2006

OFCOM has just released its first research publication, The International Communications Market 2006. Report focuses specifically on the international communications market, reflecting the increasing impact of global issues on the UK commercial and regulatory communications agenda. 

To read executive summary, please click here.

To download the document, please click here.

Thursday, November 30, 2006 4:29:15 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

A recent CNet News article shares background information and definitions on different topics in the area of security, including on botnets, distributed denial-of-service attacks, hacking, spyware, etc.

Read the full article here.

Thursday, November 30, 2006 11:05:20 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Splogs are blogs where the articles are fake and only created for spamming purposes. According to Technorati in its State of the Blogosphere the number of blogs created these past months has diminished largely because "splogs" are now easier to detect. Blog search engines detect and delete most of the "splogs", but according to Technorati, 4% of the "splogs" still manage to get through the filters in place.

Despite "splogs", the blogopsphere continues to grow. At the end of October 2006, 57 million blogs existed, 3 million more than in June 2006, and 55% were considered active (updated at least once in the last 3 months.).

To read the full l'Expansion magazine article in French, click here.

Thursday, November 30, 2006 10:56:22 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

According to the European Commission, EU member states are not doing enough to tackle the problems of spam, spyware and malicious software, despite the existing EU legislation. The implementation by EU members of this legislation is still a problem and Europe continues to suffer from illegal online activities from inside the EU and from third countries.

The Commission is now calling on all regulatory authorities and stakeholders in Europe to step up the fight against spam, spyware and malicious software and urging governments and industry to cooperate fully in this fight by applying proper filtering policies and assuring good online commercial practices. The Commission has also called for prosecution of those involved in illegal online activities. Because of the criminal and fraudulent trend in spam, and its cross border aspects, good cooperation and dialogue between the EU and third countries is essential to succeed in this fight. According to Viviane Reding, the Commissioner for Information Society and Media "it is time to turn the repeated political concern about spam into concrete actions to fight spam."

For more information, see the newly released Commission Communication.

Read also the SiliconRepublic article.

Thursday, November 30, 2006 10:35:24 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, November 27, 2006

OFCOM has just released a new public discussion document on Regulatory Challenges Posed by Next Generation Access Networks. 

To read executive summary, please click here.

To download the document, please click here.

Monday, November 27, 2006 10:46:28 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Friday, November 24, 2006

In response to the needs for health information management, ITU-T Study Group 16 has also developed the ITU-T SG 16 Technical Paper TP.RTM "Roadmap for Telemedicine" which aims to define the areas in which a set of open global international standards for e-health applications is currently needed.

To read more about the ITU-T Study Group 16's work on e-health, visit their E-Health and Standardization section.

Friday, November 24, 2006 4:55:03 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     |