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Mobile Termination and Mobile Penetration

  • Hurkens, Sjaak
  • Jeon, Doh-Shin

In this paper, we study how access pricing affects network competition when subscription demand is elastic and each network uses non-linear prices and can apply termination-based price discrimination. In the case of a fixed per minute termination charge, we find that a reduction of the termination charge below cost has two opposing effects: it softens competition but helps to internalize network externalities. The former reduces mobile penetration while the latter boosts it. We find that firms always prefer termination charge below cost for either motive while the regulator prefers termination below cost only when this boosts penetration. Next, we consider the retail benchmarking approach (Jeon and Hurkens, 2008) that determines termination charges as a function of retail prices and show that this approach allows the regulator to increase penetration without distorting call volumes.

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Paper provided by Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse in its series IDEI Working Papers with number 575.

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Date of creation: 28 Jul 2009
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in International Journal of Industrial Organization, vol.�30, n°6, novembre 2012, p.�541-552.
Handle: RePEc:ide:wpaper:21220
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  1. Doh-Shin Jeon & Sjaak Hurkens, 2007. "A Retail Benchmarking Approach to Eficient Two-Way Access Pricing," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 717.07, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
  2. Ángel L. López & Patrick Rey, 2009. "Foreclosing Competition through Access Charges and Price Discrimination," Working Papers 2009.99, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  3. Armstrong, M., 1996. "Network interconnection," Discussion Paper Series In Economics And Econometrics 9625, Economics Division, School of Social Sciences, University of Southampton.
  4. Michael Carter & Julian Wright, 2003. "Asymmetric Network Interconnection," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer, vol. 22(1), pages 27-46, February.
  5. de Bijl, P.W.J. & Peitz, M., 2004. "Dynamic Regulation and Entry in Telecommunications Markets : A Policy Framework," Discussion Paper 2004-010, Tilburg University, Tilburg Law and Economic Center.
  6. Michael Carter & Julian Wright, 1999. "Interconnection in Network Industries," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer, vol. 14(1), pages 1-25, February.
  7. Jullien, Bruno & Rey, Patrick & Sand-Zantman, Wilfried, 2009. "Mobile Call Termination Revisited," TSE Working Papers 10-198, Toulouse School of Economics (TSE), revised Aug 2010.
  8. Small, Kenneth A & Rosen, Harvey S, 1981. "Applied Welfare Economics with Discrete Choice Models," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(1), pages 105-30, January.
  9. Mark Armstrong & Julian Wright, 2009. "Mobile Call Termination," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 119(538), pages F270-F307, 06.
  10. Joan Calzada & Tommaso M. Valletti, 2008. "Network Competition and Entry Deterrence," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 118(531), pages 1223-1244, 08.
  11. Peitz, Martin & Valletti, Tommaso M. & Wright, Julian, 2004. "Competition in telecommunications: an introduction," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 315-321, September.
  12. Wright, Julian, 2002. "Access Pricing under Competition: An Application to Cellular Networks," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(3), pages 289-315, September.
  13. Cambini, Carlo & Valletti, Tommaso, 2005. "Information Exchange and Competition in Communications Networks," CEPR Discussion Papers 5031, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  14. Gans, J.S. & King, S.P., 2000. "Using 'Bill and Keep' Interconnect Arrangements to Soften Network Competiti on," Department of Economics - Working Papers Series 739, The University of Melbourne.
  15. Wouter Dessein, 2000. "Network Competition in Nonlinear Pricing," CIG Working Papers FS IV 00-22, Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin (WZB), Research Unit: Competition and Innovation (CIG).
  16. Anderson, Simon P & De Palma, Andre, 1992. "The Logit as a Model of Product Differentiation," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 44(1), pages 51-67, January.
  17. Laffont, Jean-Jacques & Marcus, Scott & Rey, Patrick & Tirole, Jean, 2001. "Internet Interconnection and the Off-Net-Cost Pricing Principle," IDEI Working Papers 130, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
  18. Benjamin E. Hermalin & Michael L. Katz, 2004. "Sender or Receiver: Who Should Pay to Exchange an Electronic Message?," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 35(3), pages 423-447, Autumn.
  19. Gans, J.S. & King, S.P., 2000. "Mobile Network Competition, Customer Ignorance and Fixed-to-Mobile Call Prices," Department of Economics - Working Papers Series 734, The University of Melbourne.
  20. Jong-Hee Hahn, 2000. "Network Competition and Interconnection with Heterogeneous Subscribers," Keele Department of Economics Discussion Papers (1995-2001) 2000/11, Department of Economics, Keele University.
  21. Tommaso M. Valletti & Carlo Cambini, 2005. "Investments and Network Competition," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 36(2), pages 446-468, Summer.
  22. Dessein, Wouter, 2004. "Network competition with heterogeneous customers and calling patterns," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 323-345, September.
  23. Valletti, Tommaso M & Cave, Martin, 1998. "Competition in UK mobile communications," Telecommunications Policy, Elsevier, vol. 22(2), pages 109-131, March.
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