Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has released a Consultation Paper on “Encouraging Innovative Technologies, Services, Use Cases, and Business Models through Regulatory Sandbox in Digital Communication Sector”.
Regulatory bodies in many countries have established sandbox frameworks for telecom tech innovation. These frameworks allow testing new concepts in controlled environments, granting exemptions, allowances, or time-bound exceptions. These frameworks aim to promote regulators’ desire for innovation with economic resilience and consumer protection. In this background, Department of Telecom (DoT) requested TRAI to provide recommendations on framework for regulatory sandbox.
The Authority approaches the issue with the aim to promote creativity and accelerate the uptake of cutting-edge technologies in the field of digital communications. Emerging technologies like Artificial Intelligence, the Internet of Things, edge computing, and others are revolutionising how we connect, interact, and access information, causing the digital communication sector to swiftly evolve. There is a need for providing an enabling environment for the development and deployment of novel technologies, services, use cases, and business models in order to stay up with this dynamic environment.
The regulatory sandbox strategy has become more popular throughout the world as a way to encourage innovation in a variety of industries. A regulatory sandbox provides a regulated setting where companies and innovators can test their concepts, goods, and services while operating under fluid regulations. Regulatory Sandbox will help the startup ecosystem in the telecom industry by giving them access to real-time network environment and other data so that they may test the reliability of new applications before releasing them on the market. To provide the starting company with a single window for obtaining all clearances, Regulatory Sandbox also seeks to encourage cross-sectoral collaboration for carrying out such tests by enlisting the help of other ministries and departments.
In its consultation paper, TRAI examines the possibility for a regulatory sandbox in the field of digital communications. The Consultation paper discusses some of the regulatory sandbox frameworks that are working in digital communication sector globally and also details some of such frameworks working within the country in other sectors. The consultation paper proposes a draft sandbox framework and seeks feedback of stakeholders on it. This draft sandbox framework includes information on the goals and scope of the framework, participant eligibility requirements, prerequisites for applicants, supporting materials needed with applications, application evaluation criteria, application and approval process, waivers or modifications to the rules, validity period, revocation of permission, reporting, oversight body, and funding of innovation for societal growth.
The Consultation Paper for seeking inputs from the stakeholders has been placed on TRAI’s website (www.trai.gov.in). Written comments on the draft sandbox framework are invited from the stakeholders by July 17, 2023 and counter comments by August 01, 2023.
The comments and counter-comments may be sent, preferably in the electronic form, to Shri Sanjeev Kumar Sharma, Advisor (BB&PA), Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, on email: firstname.lastname@example.org, with a copy to email@example.com. For any clarification/information, Shri Sanjeev Kumar Sharma, Advisor (BB&PA) may be contacted at Tel. No. +91-11-23236119.