SBC Shares VoIP Plans
SBC Communications this week entered the residential VoIP market by announcing plans to launch a service early next year for its DSL customers.
SBC is currently conducting residential VoIP trials in Los Angeles, Dallas, Chicago, and San Antonio. The service will deliver voice calling and other features, such as a Web-based portal and call-management capabilities.
The Web portal will sport features such as "find me" and enhanced "do not disturb," giving customers the ability to specify which numbers can ring through, as well as a click-to-call capability. The service will also have voice mail, call forwarding, call waiting, caller ID, and three-way calling.
The planned service is the latest in a string of recent VoIP announcements form SBC. Also this week, SBC announced a five-year, multimillion-dollar contract to provide managed VoIP services to Notre Dame University. The service will support 7000 users and replace the university's Centrex service.
In September, SBC won a contract to manage a Cisco VoIP network for 50,000 Ford Motor employees located in 110 different facilities. The carrier also launched SBC Unified Communications, a messaging service that uses IP to create a single electronic mailbox for multiple types of messages, including e-mail, wireless voice mail, landline voice mail, and even faxes.
In residential VoIP, SBC joins Verizon, which rolled out a service in July; and Qwest Communications International, which turned up a service in Minnesota last year. BellSouth has just begun trials in Florida.