SingTel’s chief called on the industry and regulator to take the NBN to the next level by creating a “superstructure” that would facilitate common standards for network intelligence, security and a level playing field for apps and content developers.
“For Singapore to have a thriving digital economy, we have to go beyond just high-speed internet,” said SingTel CEO Allen Lew during the opening session of the Next Generation Broadband track of the CommunicAsia2011 Summit Tuesday.
Lew proposed the creation of a “smart superstructure” on top of Singapore’s current NBN infrastructure with four distinct elements, starting with a standardized intelligence layer.
“This would allow service providers to know where the customers are, know their profiles and permissions,” he said. “This intelligence layer should make it easy for application providers to create more targeted services.”
Lew also said the superstructure should include policies and behavior, and high security standards so that users “feel safe” when using digital services.
Lew also called on the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) to create a new, advanced regulatory regime to facilitate all this, particularly in terms of leveling the field for application and content providers.
“New regulations need to ensure that application providers and content providers have open access to everyone’s networks, and that all service providers have open access to the application providers and content providers,” he said.
“It’s all about ensuring open and universal access,” Lew added. “We need to look at these kinds of access bottlenecks so customers can get access to any content regardless of which service provider has it.”
“Singapore will only become a true digital powerhouse if we put these key elements in place,” Lew said.
John C. Tanner