Zero Rating: Does Consumer Benefit Outweigh Impact on Supplier Revenue Model?

But many oppose the notion of subsidized use of apps, including zero rating, which allows use of some apps without the purchase of a data plan. That has proven quite popular with consumers in many parts of the developing world. 

But some say zero rating is unfair to app providers, as it "turns the Internet into cable TV." It sometimes is hard to know what to make of such arguments. 

Every app and service must have a viable revenue model to survive, even assuming there is clear value for end users. Content services, such as cable TV, subscription radio, streaming video services, subscription websites, magazines, newspapers, 

And the Internet arguably is chaniging. Many of the new apps are content related. And content businesses have a few reliable revenue models, including subscriptions, advertising and sponsorship. 

The argument against zero rating essentially is that any app provider should not have the right to choose a sponsorship model for business reasons of its own, just as it might choose a commerce, advertising or end user fee revenue model.

Some think that is a form of application blocking.

The problem these days is that nearly every dispute between Internet domain providers, content providers and access providers, mobile app store owners and app suppliers is viewed as some form of "application blocking." 

How about viewing zero rating as a consumer-friendly choice with direct benefits for consumers who get to use valuable apps at lower cost than otherwide would be possible? 

For millions of consumers in the developing world, zero rating is anything but a problem. 
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