Policy makers called upon to liberalize frequencies for new telecommunications services

The German market for information technology, telecommunications and digital consumer electronics (ITK market) has not been growing homogeniously in 2007. While the information technology and digital consumer electronics segments have been growing by between 3 to 6 percent so far, the telecommunications sector suffers from turnover drops due to sharply falling prices, said the German Association for Information Technology, Telecommunications and New Media (BITKOM).

According to BITKOM experts, the ITK market as a whole would presumably grow by 1.3% to 147.8 billion Euros this year. In spite of decreasing turnover in the field of telecommunications the interest in these services keeps being strong. In this context, BITKOM points to triple-digit growth rates with regard to new kinds of voice telephony over the internet and TV cable. The number of cellular phone calls also rose by one third in 2006.

However, these developments could not compensate for a big drop in prices. Against this backdrop BITKOM calls upon policy makers to remove obstacles to issues such as TV over cellular phones and the internet as soon as possible given that telecommunications companies are in the starting blocks. Now it was time for policy makers to act and to make available radio frequencies urgently needed.

This in general also applies to the broad band sector. In rural areas fast internet access is often not available given that it is too expensive to install the infrastructure needed. Therefore, according to BITKOM , federal state media institutions should open free radio frequencies to broadband. Furthermore, providers should be allowed to differentiate their prices regionally. GERMAN