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‘Regulations governing Internet-based phone calls to be issued soon’

By Mohammad Ghazal - Dec 29,2015 - Last updated at Dec 29,2015

Voice over Internet Protocol services offered by apps such as Viber and Skype have affected the local telecom sector’s revenues, according to the Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (Photo by Bahaa Al Deen Al Nawas)

AMMAN — Regulations governing Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services are expected to be issued soon, according to the Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (TRC).

VoIP enables people to use the Internet as the transmission medium for voice calls. It is used in applications such as Viber, Skype and WhatsApp. 

The TRC will discuss the issue in the next few days and will take a final decision on the new regulations, which will be in line with the Telecommunications Law, TRC Chief Commissioner Ghazi Jbour said Monday.

The regulations, he added, will preserve the interests of all stakeholders.

Using such applications to make voice calls over the Internet has affected the telecom sector’s revenues, Jbour told The Jordan Times, adding that such apps utilise infrastructure developed by companies operating in the local market.

Stressing that the regulations will not entail blocking any of these services, he said they will focus on making voice calls using these apps.

The TRC recently started a study in cooperation with local telcos on the impact of VoIP apps such as Viber and WhatsApp on the telecom market and its revenues, the official noted

The increase in Internet penetration and the rise in adoption of smartphones has led to a decline in sending text messages and making voice calls, especially international voice calls, said Jbour.

He added that there is a notable drop in international voice calls.

According to the latest figures by the TRC, there are more than 6.3 million Internet users in Jordan and some 13 million active mobile subscriptions.

 

Figures by the ICT Ministry indicate that smartphone penetration in Jordan exceeds 70 per cent. 

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