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BellSouth To Roll Robust VoIP For Business

BellSouth has announced that it will begin to offer a business-class VoIP service over its private IP backbone network in Miami and Columbia, S.C., preparatory to rolling out the service to additional metro areas in the Southeast by year's end.

The company said customers' voice and data traffic will be transmitted over its BellSouth Regional IP Backbone, relieving customers of needing to install complex VoIP equipment. By using BellSouth's private network, the firm said, security and reliability will be enhanced. Regular VoIP service, while greatly improved in recent months, can still be interrupted by service outages when broadband connections fail.

Siemens Information and Communication Networks is supplying its SURPASS hiQ softswitch and SURPASS hiG media gateway as key underpinnings of the BellSouth offering.

In a statement, BellSouth said that its product portfolio for the trial "included equipment-based services (IP-PBX), which the company has offered for nearly three years, Centrex IP, a network service announced last month, and the additional network-hosted service. These solutions are all designed to complement traditional voice services currently utilized by businesses and provide alternatives and migration paths as customers consider the technology evolution and voice/data integration of their communications networks."

Customers retain control of their VoIP service through an interactive Web interface, the firm said.