Technology Policy Review, India | October — December 2020

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The government’s message is clear — regulation of digital spaces is necessary and imminent. One of the most important developments in the October-December 2020 quarter was the Information and Broadcasting ministry getting administrative control over digital news platforms and streaming services. Digital news soon became subject to FDI restrictions, while self-regulation of streaming services remained a non-starter.

In this edition of the Technology Policy Review, we have summarised all the major developments in the Indian internet ecosystem that transpired between October and December 2020.

There were several major policy shifts. For instance, the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) announced a significant policy change this quarter by capping UPI players’ market share at 30%. This was done at the exact same time as it allowed the launch of WhatsApp Pay. The government antitrust regulator, the Competition Commission of India (CCI), meanwhile, trained its eyes on Google and opened a full-blown investigation into the tech giant.

This report will give you an overview of:

  1. Key developments between October-December (Q4 2020) in India’s technology and internet ecosystem
  2. Government decisions that will impact the Internet in India, around digital news, gig economy, and facial recognition, etc
  3. The factors influencing India’s decisions and responses, such as Indo-China relations, the COVID-19 pandemic and need for digital health systems, demands for regulation of the streaming industry and so on.

To read our previous report on the July-September 2020 quarter, please go to: