New zero-rated offering of Orange Slovakia

Slovak regulator RÚ investigates Orange Slovakia compliance with net neutrality for its new zero-rated offer, the watchdog’s spokesman confirmed for Zive.sk. Several mobile operators have offered zero-rated add-on packages since long. RÚ has considered them compliant with the net neutrality rules so far. So, what is different now?

In October, Orange Slovakia introduced its enhanced monthly plans. The tariff series Go includes now unlimited access to selected apps. Depending on the plan, the customer can enjoy unlimited access to social networks, chat or video. The top tariff includes all of these.

Orange and other operators sell similar packages since 2018. However, not as part of monthly plans but rather as separate add-ons. Incorporating the add-ons in the standard offer may pose a problem. Namely, with regard to the net neutrality requirements applied in the EU.

Orange offers zero-rated access to the following apps:

Chat: WhatsApp, Telegram, Messenger, Skype, Viber, Samsung Messages, Správy and Pokec.sk

Social networks: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat, Badoo, LinkedIn and TikTok

Video – Netflix, Orange TV, HBO Go, YouTube, YouTube Kids, Magio Go, Antik TV, Twitch and Aktuality.sk

Note pokec.sk and aktuality.sk count to the most popular consumer websites in Slovakia.

Slovak regulator launched an investigation against Orange upon its own initiative. Its aim is to find out whether the operator’s zero-rated offer does not discriminate against providers of the other apps. Net neutrality rules namely require that operators treat all content providers on their networks equally.

Regulators use a range of techniques to monitor and audit net neutrality. These might include analysis of the marketing information published by the internet service providers and mobile network operators; as well as tools such as RU MobilTest and Open Nettest to run set of comprehensive tests to detect deviations from net neutrality standards.

Picture copyright: Adoe Stock | Gorodenkoff

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