Newsletter ARCEP


January 2018 
The Post

photo2018: preparing for the future

Arcep’s change in tack, begun in 2015, has translated into actions and results.

Pro-investment regulation has enabled the telecoms sector to get back on track. Arcep will continue firmly on this path in 2018, and will put its guidelines into action in the field. Decisive steps forward will be taken on fibre regulation, the business market and data-driven regulation. The announcement of a new deal for mobile is paving the way for a major paradigm shift, which will need to translate into rapid rollouts.

The positive momentum in the sector means that we now need to prepare for the future. France cannot waste its talent by constantly seeking to make up for lost time.

Arcep wants to be a regulator that unleashes power and energy, and throws open the doors for all the innovators – and I mean ALL the innovators. By supporting Internet of Things start-ups with its regulatory sandbox, and by keeping stakeholders informed about unlicensed frequencies. By galvanising the momentum around 5G, not only operators but every potential user of verticals (industries, infrastructures, public amenities). By guaranteeing the right to permissionless innovation on the internet, by upholding the crucial principle of net neutrality, and, looking beyond, by tackling the issue of devices (smartphones, tablets, voice assistants).

Watch Sébastien Soriano’s hearing with the National Assembly Economic Affairs Committee (in French)

Arcep’s pro-investment regulation, in detail (in French)

Arcep’s 2018 innovation-centric New Year’s message, in the era of Europe and a new deal for mobile

Sébastien Soriano, Chairman of Arcep


Regulation in action

Accelerating the pace of regional coverage: a look at the agreement reached between the Government, Arcep and mobile operators

Digital market barometer figures clearly show that mobile networks have become the main channel that French people use to access communications and the Internet. Mobile coverage is a major priority for Arcep, and the Authority welcomes the ambitious targets that the President of France and the Government have set forth in this area.

At the Government’s request, Arcep consulted with all of the stakeholders, operators and local authorities, drawing its inspiration from the world’s most connected countries. Having completed this work, Arcep submitted a proposal to the Government that includes new rollout obligations for operators that are unprecedented in the scale of their ambition.

This new deal between the Government, Arcep and mobile operators makes regional development a priority in the conditions attached to mobile frequency licences. This marks a major paradigm shift. These new terms will be binding obligations, and failure to comply could result in sanctions from Arcep

Find out more
Technical description of operators’ obligation
Sébastien Soriano interview with Les Echos "We are getting tough with mobile operators” (in French)
Photo of the protagonists


Tomorrow by the numbers
According to the Consumer Technology Association, 43.6 million voice-controlled smart speakers will be sold in the United States in 2018, or 60% more than in 2017.

On our radar  

Serge Abiteboul, new member of the Arcep Executive Board

Appointed by the President of the National Assembly, Director of Research in computer sciences at the École Normale Supérieure de Paris and at INRIA (the French National Institute for computer science and applied mathematics), Serge Abiteboul has been a member of the Arcep Executive Board since 13 January. This data and algorithms specialist, whose previous work has included a seat on the CNNum advisory committee, takes over from Jacques Stern whose term on the Board has come to an end.

Find out more

News from around the world
When South Korea regulates apps

Our smartphones contain apps that cannot be deleted. Are they indispensable? Since 2014 South Korea’s telecommunications ministry has worked to give users the ability to delete any apps that are not vital to their telephone’s operation. By adding this recommendation to the Telecommunications Business Act in 2017, the Korean Communications Commission forbids handset suppliers, developers and operators from blocking the deletion (or installation) of applications, and gives users the power to make this choice.


Arcep like

L'Arcep likes

The Conseil d’État validates Arcep’s decisions on mobile network sharing

Following a proactive measure taken by Arcep and the publication of guidelines in 2016, Free Mobile and Orange reached an agreement in June 2016 on a timetable for phasing out Free Mobile’s roaming on the Orange network.

Three complaints were filed with the Conseil d’État in summer 2016:

- from Bouygues Telecom and Free Mobile, against Arcep’s guidelines;

- and a Bouygues Telecom complaint regarding the Arcep decision not to request a change in the timeline for phasing out Free Mobile’s roaming on the Orange network.

With close to 1,000 pages of memoranda exchanged between Arcep, Bouygues Telecom, Orange and Free Mobile, the Conseil d’État has upheld Arcep’s actions, and thus substantiated the foundations of its pro-investment regulation.

Find out more


Field notes

Superfast wireless access: an interactive map to find out everything you need to know about the frequencies available in your department!

Tout terrain To satisfy the regions’ superfast connectivity needs, Arcep decided to allocate the 3410-3460 MHz frequency band for superfast wireless rollouts. On 11 December, Arcep published the terms and methods for allocating these frequencies. Intended to complement other technologies, their allocation will be confined, within each department, to those locations where no fixed superfast rollouts are planned for the short or medium term. These licences will also carry stringent rollout, coverage and availability obligations, with a view to ensuring a high standard superfast access service.

Applications for frequency licences must be submitted to Arcep. To find out the frequencies available in your department, and all of the (pending or finalised) licence applications, check out Arcep’s interactive map!

Interactive map

Well said trait

"This power that platforms have – like the difficulty in taxing them – comes largely from the fact that they mark a break from traditional industry value chains, imposing a number of new and extremely sophisticated business models, further strengthened by their ability to observe their users and forge new alliances with the crowd.
The only way to respond is to deploy new concepts: digital commons, a subtle diversification of rights of use (e.g. what computer scientists call API design)."

Henri Verdier, Inter-ministerial Director of Digital Affairs

Meanwhile in Brussels...

A year of enforcing net neutrality in Europe: BEREC takes stock

Just over a year after having adopted its net neutrality guidelines, last December BEREC published a report that delivers a scorecard for the first months of implementing net neutrality rules across Europe. Drawing on the 28 national reports published last June, and discussions between national experts on their own experiences, the report welcomes the consistency of national regulatory authorities’ (NRA) approach to practices that undermine net neutrality (blocking apps, discriminatory traffic management, etc.) and stresses that certain commercial practices that could have an impact on users’ rights, such as zero rating, warrant close analysis. The report underscores the importance of the dialogue between NRAs with BEREC, to ensure the consistent enforcement of European regulation.

In 2018, BEREC will draw on this initial experience to assess the enforcement of the Open Internet rules and the guidelines adopted in August 2016. This assessment report to be published in December 2018 will help inform the European Commission’s own assessment in 2019.

The report


Arcep, telling it like it is

Photo A new year has begun, and a chairmanship comes to a close. Arcep has passed the baton on the position of BEREC Chair, the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications, to the Austrian regulatory authority.

The work programme in 2017 was a busy one: net neutrality in Europe, fixed and mobile connectivity, review of the European regulatory framework for electronic communications… Arcep’s European and international affairs department was fully mobilised for the task, as were all of its teams, steering and contributing actively to BEREC working groups, performing work that has been crucial to achieving this ambitious programme.

This full involvement also meant a considerable amount of travel for the Arcep Chairman on behalf of BEREC, both across Europe and around the world (notably to India, the United States and South Korea) to deliver BEREC’s core messages in 2017: improve connectivity across the whole of Europe, protect an open internet, and deepen BEREC’s dialogue with Europeans.

Through the central role it played in representing, organising and coordination BEREC’s actions in Europe and elsewhere, Arcep was at the heart of European telecoms and digital affairs in 2017.

Sébastien Soriano, Chairman of Arcep, Anne Lenfant, Daniel Miara, Jean Cattan, Jérôme Gerbaud, Clara Hanot, Muriel Le Vaou, Ingrid Malfait, Anh Tuc Nguyen
"BEREC" team of Arcep

15 February 2018 in Paris


Afterwork “Are devices the weak link in achieving open internet access?”

Smartphones, tablets, voice assistants… are they the weak links in achieving open internet access? A vast topic that Arcep has been examining since 2016. To coincide with the publication of its full report on then issue, Arcep will be hosting an afternoon of debates with developers, equipment suppliers, app publishers, experts…

The report will be available in English. The proceedings will be translated into English, filmed and live streamed in both languages.

The programme



30 and 31 January 2018 in Paris
APIDays Paris

Application Programming Interfaces have their own conference! For six years now, developers and public IT players have been meeting at APIDays. This year’s edition will be taking place in Paris on 30 and 31 January. Arcep Chairman, Sébastien Soriano, will be there to talk about pro-innovation regulation.
Find out more

8 February 2018 in Paris
Public 5G workshop, hosted by the Ministry of the Economy and Finance

In December the Government launched a public consultation on the challenges of 5G: rollout conditions, trials, etc. A workshop will be held on 8 February devoted to a more detailed exploration of the issues and challenges that lie ahead.

13, 14 and 15 February 2018 in Valencia, Spain
FttH Conference

Fibre industry stakeholders are invited to come to Valencia in February for the FttH Conference. With 3,000 participants from more than 90 countries, the FttH Conference is a key event for those interested in this topic. Arcep Executive Board member, Philippe Distler, will be on hand to represent the Authority.
Find out more

19, 20, 21 and 22 February 2018 in Paris
Conference on Innovation in Cloud, Internet and Networks 2018

Academics and equipment supplier representatives will come together for the 21st international conference on “Innovation in Cloud, Internet and Networks” whose theme this year will be 5G.
Find out more

26 February to 1 March 2018 in Barcelona
Mobile World Congress

The Mobile World Congress, the annual event in Europe for all things mobile, will be taking place from 26 February to 1 March 2018 in Barcelona. Hosted annually by the GSMA, this international event brings together all of the sector’s players. The programme includes conferences, workshops, product launches and demos of the innovations that will be tomorrow’s mobile equipment.
Find out more




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