Hot unhappy with ISP licence restrictions

Israeli cable operator Hot has claimed that the internet service provider licence it is due to receive from the Ministry of Communications is discriminatory, compared with licences granted to wireless operators.

The Ministry of Communications had hesitated in granting Hot the licence because of a dispute over the company’s structure and how it plans to sell internet services. It expressed concerns that Hot could provide both internet connectivity and triple-play services, which could adversely impact existing ISPs and give Hot a marketing advantage over incumbent telco Bezeq.

It later decided that Hot would receive a licence once Bezeq was granted a permit to offer triple-play services. However, Hot believes the licence will incorporate unnecessary restrictions relating to the marketing of services. It is unhappy that the Ministry is expected to restrict the marketing of bundled services after its market share reaches a minimum of 15% of subscribers to broadband services of sister company HOT Telecom. Licences granted to wireless telephony carriers have no restrictions.