The net neutraility argument continues. The FCC is due to vote on new net neutrality rules tomorrow whilst Verizon has warned the commission not to pass rules barring operators from favouring certain types of content or applications over others or from degrading traffic of Internet companies that offer services similar to those of the carriers. But does net neutrality understate the role of sound network management practices and ignore the real benefits that smart networks deliver?
Most operators are now seriously attacking the idea that they should be considered "dumb pipes" whose sole job is to neutrally push traffic from content providers. With user experience and the personalisation of services expected to be a key differentiator between networks, when operators do decide to invest in LTE, they plan to generate revenues from offering tiered pricing and an extensive API offering. Knowing what the customer is using his/her data for will be crucial to offering the right service to the right customer.
Taking away the operators' ability to favour certain content and to create tiered services may take away the financial incentive to invest in network upgrades. Again this is the argument being put forward by Verizon, if it is not able to make a return on the huge investment being made in it LTE network, then it seriously impacts on future investments and the future quality of service that operators can provide.