The FCC, TWC, Skype, And The Cellular Industry

On March 1, 2007, the FCC ruled in favor of a petition brought by Time Warner Communications, stating that local exchanges cannot deny access to wholesale telecommunication carriers (TWC) to provide services and exchange traffic, including voice over Internet protocol (VoIP).

The decision overturned rulings in South Carolina and Nebraska that allowed local rural exchanges to deny access to wholesale carriers, arguing that the wholesale providers were not true telecommunications providers, as they do not offer services directly to the public.The FCC disagreed stating: “denying wholesale telecommunications service providers the right to interconnect with incumbent LECs… are inconsistent with the Act and Commission precedent and would frustrate the development of competition and broadband deployment.”

In another somewhat related petition, VoIP provider Skype has asked the FCC to apply the Carterphone decision of 1968 to the cellular phone industry, effectively forcing the cellcos to allow outside devices and applications to connect to their network.

The Carterphone ruling determined at the time that AT&Ts telephone network stopped at the phone jack, ending a monopoly on user hardware, and spurring a massive influx of new devices and technological innovations in the market.

The Skype petition opens up a whole new can of worms for the US cell phone industry, bringing them to the forefront of the grass roots Net Neutrality debate. In his paper Dr. Tim Wu details the techniques used by the cellcos Verizon, Sprint, AT&T, and T-Mobile, to limit consumer access to devices and applications such as WiFi, VoIP, Internet browsing and more.

Cell phone companies in the US not only control the public airwaves they have been entrusted with, they also sell the equipment that is used to connect to their networks, much like AT&T did before the Carterphone ruling. They control access to their networks by either disabling the SIM chip on the phones they sell, effectively locking it to the network, or by requiring cell phones be registered with the carrier network through their Electronic Serial Number (ESN).

Strict control of services allowed on the American cellular networks has stifled developers and impeded the development useful applications, severely limiting competition and consumer choice. VoIP over WiFi connections, advanced GPS features, Bluetooth wireless capabilities, and the development of advanced SMS applications are just some of the technology that has at one time or another been hindered by the US cellular industry.

By ruling in favor of Time Warner, the FCC sided with the big boys, and rightly so. Consumers should be able to choose from a wide variety of applications, including VoIP, if it is technologically feasible. For a service provider to deny them that, simply because it doesn’t benefit the carrier, is not only non competitive, but somehow, just un-American.

Skype has also asked the FCC in its petition to consider a method to create transparent and neutral standards in the cellular industry, perhaps something like the IEEE standards committee that has worked so well for wireless networking. Sounds great! Developers and device manufacturers could work together to foster competition and technological innovation, ultimately with enormous benefit to the consumer.

Obviously, this is not something that the US cellular industry would want, and would undoubtedly marshal all of their considerable resources in opposition. A project of this magnitude would also be an enormous undertaking for the FCC, and could conceivably lead to yet another level of bureaucracy.

If it is truly the mission of the FCC to foster competition, new technology, and to protect consumer rights as the TWC decision implies, then there is a golden opportunity for them to do just that in the petition from the little guy, Skype. As guardian of the people’s communication systems and the public airwaves, to apply the Carterphone principals equally to all the players in the Telecommunications Industry would seem, to me at least, to be a no brainer.

Advantages Of Having A Direct Inward Dial Number

Every company makes use of certain communication system to get connected to his employees. Communication is an integral part of any business. Thus, various companies use direct inward dial number to reduce the cost of calls. This is a telecommunication services offered by telephone companies to all those subscribers who operate private branch exchange system.

These direct inward dial services provide every employee their own toll-free number. Like in case of a company if a client wants to talk to an employer, he directly gets connected to that particular employer instead of a receptionist diverting a call to that particular employer.

The benefits of having a direct inward dial number-

-A direct inward dial number is easy to get and it saves lots of money as one need not purchase multiple connections and multiple telephones. In fact, for managing these telephones, there is a requirement of an attendant to look after incoming or outgoing calls. All these lead of reduction in cost.

– It saves a lot of time as one receives the calls directly without any intervention of a mediator. This is the actual benefit of having a direct inward dial number.

-Higher costumer appreciation- costumer feels that they are provided with better services when they are able to make direct contact with the desired person without intervention of a mediator thus saving time and efforts. This is most comforting for a costumer to talk to an employee directly.

-Communication becomes effective as no calls go unattended. In fact, one does not need an in-house PBX for every connection. Thus, this makes the work even easier.

-One can manage communication with ease and communication remains efficient throughout the process.

-Cost effective as it is cheaper than normal phone calls. Once registered everything is free which includes installation as well.

-Direct inward dial number allows easy access to its services. They provide the users with a page which provides all the necessary details for managing the account.

– Customisation is considered another best and desired feature. Through this option one has the option of entering the last 4 digits of his choice. If already chosen, then few other options are displayed. And the user is supposed to choose from those numbers displayed.

-Easy implementation-

One need not to give a second thought prior to the implementation of a direct inward dial number as it is easy to implement these services. One just needs to fill the online form and payment details to avail the facilities.

-Easy cancellation-

Like implementation, cancellation is also really easy. These services are provided on a monthly basis. As soon as one wants to opt out he/she just need to notify. If he/she didn’t recharge, his subscription will get expired.

These services are best as they provide many SIP trunk likes to get connected with the PBX. As mentioned earlier, no calls go unanswered as for convenience; these calls are forwarded to a mobile phone as well. One has to even choose a call forwarding setting for allowing call forwarding.

In fact, for emergency services the newer dial inward dial number is available which get setup within 5 minutes.

Broadband Services – Know More About It

Internet is a great gift to the humans by the technology. Internet helps them to do surfing, chatting or even downloading with the high speed accessibility. Every one of us is aware of the need of internet. It becomes a necessity as every people wants to seek information in an easiest way. If you want to access internet you need some medium like dialup connection or broadband.

If you do not have any of them you have to rush to the cyber cafe to access your emails. So for the fast connectivity, broadband is the best option through which internet can be accessed without interruption. Life becomes very easy by having these broadband services at home by shedding some little charges for installation.

Many companies are come up with their broadband services for the users. Now user has to decide which plan they want for broadband and selects the best plan, services, and reliable source and provides you fast speed for accessing internet. Almost all the biggest telecommunication service provider is there to provide broadband services to the users.

With the help of broadband, there will not be any problem in accessing internet; line is down as it is there in the dial up connection. Having broadband will give you freedom of checking your emails even at your home. Its speed is much faster than other internet connection. You have the freedom to access World Wide Web websites at any time with the help of high speed internet services of broadband.

With the broadband services you have lots of advantages which are not there in the normal dial up connections of internet in previous times. You can even connect other devices also with the internet services with the help of wireless router like phones or PDAs. It has made difference in people’s life.