With Ofcom having previously published a statement on the future of landline services in February 2019, in which it set out what it said were some of the potential benefits to consumers as phone companies move their landline services to IP technology, the industry regulator has now launched three separate consultations related to the future use of telephone numbers, and the necessary working arrangements between networks.
In short, the British telecoms regulator has said it is aiming to: promote competition between providers of phone services; promote confidence in phone numbers and services by tackling nuisance and scam calls and addressing pricing practices that lead to unexpected or unreasonable bills; and protect consumers from harm by making sure they continue to have access to important services.
One of the consultations being undertaken relates to the future of interconnection and call termination, and in this Ofcom said it discusses ‘the factors that may influence future regulation, and potential options for the future regulatory framework’. Meanwhile, in its ‘Promoting trust in telephone numbers’ consultation, the watchdog sets out its ‘proposal for a key change in the way numbers are used by networks, which we believe is necessary to tackle nuisance and scam calls’. Finally, in the ‘Future of telephone numbers’ consultation Ofcom looks at ‘how numbers might need to evolve so they continue to promote confidence in telephone services’