Unbundling access to local loops allows new market entrants to employ the fixed infrastructure of incumbents and provide advanced services, including IPTV and ancillary interactive services. It also expands new entrants’ potential market reach and increases IPTV service competition. Several countries have required local loop unbundling, including all of OECD countries except Mexico. Many developing countries, such as Colombia, Peru, and South Africa, have introduced or proposed mandated local loop unbundling into their regulatory frameworks.
In many countries where IPTV already has a high market penetration (such as France, Italy and Spain), unbundling has been a key factor allowing new entrants to develop competing offers and increase IPTV penetration. In Japan, the main broadband competitor, Yahoo! BB, offers an IPTV service based on unbundled infrastructure that competes with the incumbent’s IPTV service.
As incumbents plan network upgrades and build fiber-based, next-generation networks, regulators are considering whether to modify unbundling rules in order to avoid disrupting the broadband Internet and IPTV services of incumbents. For instance, European countries such as the UK have conducted public consultations to adapt their existing unbundling rules to the new fiber network architectures. Among the issues being considered is the feasibility of unbundling the last mile of fiber network architecture. The consultation also has addressed whether or not to introduce access obligations for additional local loop network elements, such as street cabinets, ducts, and the fiber itself.
 OECD, IPTV: Market Developments and Regulatory Treatment, DSTI/ICCP/CISP(2006)5/FINAL, at 15 (Dec. 17, 2007), available at www.oecd.org/dataoecd/11/23/39869088.pdf.
 OECD Communications Outlook 2007 53-59 (2007), available at http://184.108.40.206/oecd/pdfs/browseit/9307021E.PDF.
 See Off. of Comms. (Ofcom), Regulatory Challenges Posed by Next Generation Access Networks (Nov. 23, 2006), available at www.ofcom.org.uk/research/telecoms/reports/nga/nga.pdf.