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GTE Internetworking Launches International VoIP Service

GTE Internetworking has introduced its international Voice over IP service.

The GTE ((GTE) offer enables next-generation communications companies to carry their customers' voice traffic over a high quality managed IP network.

The new service provides wholesale voice transport and termination to international communications companies. Internet service providers and Internet telephony service providers that partner with GTE can offer customers the ability to send international voice and fax traffic over GTE Internetworking's privately managed IP network.

VoIP employs IP gateways that packetize a caller's voice and transmit the information over an IP network to the called party's telephone or multimedia PC. The technology offers significant cost savings over traditional telephone calls.

The GTE Internetworking system is built on the company's Global Network Infrastructure, not over the public Internet. GTE's GNI is a private fiber backbone spanning 17,000 miles in the U.S. with managed bandwidth connectivity to Europe, South America and the Far East.

Paul R. Gudonis, GTE Internetworking president, said that demand for VoIP services has made the international IP network a necessity.

"The market is rapidly evolving toward an IP-based converged data and voice network, and the demand for Voice over IP and enhanced IP services is exploding," Gudonis said. "We ran extensive trials and tests of our IP telephony network to help ensure that our VoIP service has the highest quality available."

Tiscali S.p.A. is one of the six companies that have been granted a license from the Italian Ministry of Communication to operate as a telecommunication carrier. Based in Cagliari, Italy, Tiscali played a large part in testing the GTE VoIP service.

Gudnois said that initial tests with Tiscali proved very successful and that the international VoIP network performed well.

"This initial service, the first in a series of market-driven VoIP offerings from GTE Internetworking, has performed extremely well in trials with Tiscali, an innovative, nextgen Internet and telephony services provider in Italy," Gudonis said.

Renato Soru, Tiscali chief executive officer, said partnering with GTE Internetworking made if easy for the Italian telecommunications firm to bring the new service to market.

"Working with GTE Internetworking has helped us dramatically reduce our time to market in offering competitively priced international call services to our end customers," Soru said. "This partnership has provided us with immediate access to a reliable global IP infrastructure with minimal investment on our part. Our trial customers have been very pleased with the quality of service we are providing through GTE Internetworking's International VoIP Direct Service."

The service is offered to ISPs and ITSPs as part of Net.Alliance, GTE Internetworking's international business partner program. Net.Alliance is a strategic international network of top-tier providers that resell GTE Internetworking's services.

GTE Internetworking's VoIP service is based on open standards for voice compression and interoperability. To provide high quality service, GTE Internetworking has deployed an enhanced IP service network based on Cisco Systems carrier-class IP gateways and gatekeepers. The dedicated system enables GTE Internetworking to provide local call service to over 80 percent of U.S. metropolitan markets.

GTE uses an Intelligent Route Diversity technique to combine load balancing, automated dynamic least cost routing, and failover features. IRD assures carriers the best termination rates along with high reliable packet transmission.

Kevin Kennedy, Cisco Systems senior vice president service provider business lines, said the GTE system delivers next generation IP telephone services over conventional networks.

"Cisco and GTE Internetworking have come together to develop an innovative Voice over IP network that will empower next generation Telcos to realize immediate cost savings while providing the foundation for delivering enhanced IP services today and in the future," Kennedy said.