DP5588 | On-Net and Off-Net Pricing on Asymmetric Telecommunications Networks

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Publication Date

27/03/2006

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Abstract

The differential between on-net and off-net prices, for example on mobile telephony networks, is an issue that is hotly debated between telecoms operators and regulators. Small operators contend that their competitors' high off-net prices are anticompetitive. We show that if the utility of receiving calls is taken into account, the equilibrium pricing structures will indeed depend on firms' market shares. Larger firms will charge higher off-net prices even without anticompetitive intent, both under linear and two-part tariffs. Predative behavior would be accompanied by even larger on-net / off-net differentials even if access charges are set at cost.