Worldwide, there is an ongoing debate among governments, industry and consumers regarding regulations of OTT services and net-neutrality. In this background, Trai today released a consultation paper on regulatory framework for OTT services,People can use services like WhatsApp, Skype and Google Talk to make internent phone calls to people around around the world without paying any money and only internet bandwidth is consumed of the user. The VoIP operators and the Telecom giants are at loggerhead over the matter. TRAI might start a process to regulate the OTT services in India after airtel faced a huge criticism when they tried to change the plan to charge separately for VoIP calls, against principles of net-neutrality. TRAI said that Telecom Service Providers (TSPs) offering fixed and mobile telephony are currently being overwhelmed by online content, known as over-the-top (OTT) applications, and services. TRAI said in a statement,
It is becoming increasingly difficult for consumers to know if there is an economic difference in connecting various networks via a landline phone, cell phone, or a computer.In fact, young users find it difficult to distinguish among these three networks; from their perspective, all that matters is connectivity,On the other hand, OTT providers make use of the TSPs' infrastructure to reach their customers... that not only makes money for them but also compete with the traditional services offered by TSPs.TRAI has sought views of people till April 24 and TRAI will take decision after that.