A report published by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission today has recommended that Telstra adopt lower wholesale access prices for its fixed copper network; however, iiNet chief regulatory officer Steve Dalby isn't convinced it will make a difference.
The ACCC's draft pricing table for Telstra's wholesale copper network.(Table screenshot by Luke Hopewell/ZDNet Australia)
The ACCC's report recommends a drop in the indicative price of the wholesale line retail (WLR) service, the price that a company pays to supply voice services to customers using Telstra's equipment, as well as a drop in the local carriage service (LCS) cost — generally sold with WLR so that a company doesn't have to install its own equipment to supply end-to-end voice services to a customer.
Meanwhile, the report recommends that the line sharing service (LSS) that allows a company to supply ADSL services using its own equipment in Telstra exchanges (like DSLAMs) and cost of supplying service via a whole copper line from the exchange to the home (ULLS) cost remain unchanged.
Dalby told ZDNet Australia that the regulator's recommendations were unlikely to be of any consequence to the broadband providers which offer copper-line services.
"Telstra has never taken any notice of the pricing principles when setting its wholesale prices, and is not likely to do so on this occasion," he said.
iiNet and Internode have previously complained to the regulator of a price squeeze after Telstra started selling retail broadband services through BigPond at a cheaper rate to what it was offering its wholesale customers.
The competition regulator said that the draft pricing was set down under a new "building block model", designed to lock in the value of a network asset and from that establish a more accurate value for network access.
The report has set down the draft pricing recommendations and intends to apply from the start of 2011, through to the end of 2014.