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Just as mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs) are able to piggy back on infrastructure already installed by a true network operator, we are seeing more and more cases of the latter opening up part of their infrastructure to peers. The classic case is tower-sharing, which is now becoming almost a default setting due to the increasing tendency for specialist firms like American Tower Corporation to buy up or build extensive tracts of this passive infrastructure and take that cumbersome part of the equation out of service providers' hands. In some cases governments have taken steps to force sharing upon operators but increasingly they recognize that it is in their interest to share and mutually achieve rapid expansion in their coverage. In this report we discuss whether government intervention is really necessary and consider how far the sharing concept can go.
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