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AT&T-Unisource Delivers Usenet By Satellite To European ISPs

AT&T-Unisource Communications Services, the joint venture company formed by AT&T and Unisource, announced that it the launch of the Satellite Newsfeed Service to deliver Usenet News to ISPs in Europe.

There are now 43,000 different newsgroups in the Usenet service, covering nearly every topic imaginable, the company said.

AT&T-Unisource Communications Services, which is based in Hoofddorp, the Netherlands, said it will provide a high-speed, one-way information stream direct to a satellite dish and modem at the customer's site. The service will greatly alleviate terrestrial bandwidth, the firm said, because at present an ISP needs around 1.6 Mbps to transmit a newsfeed. The Usenet newsfeed takes up 15 Gigabytes daily and more than doubles each year.

"The economies of scale and scalability of satellite makes our Satellite Newsfeed Service far more attractive to customers than tying up expensive terrestrial circuits," said Jos Gerrese, director of Internet services at AT&T-Unisource. "Our package is a cost-effective, end-to-end, secure and fully-managed service--the customer does not have to purchase any additional equipment--which can easily keep pace with Usenet's phenomenal growth."

Currently, the Satellite Newsfeed Service is using the Eutelsat II F3, which gives it a large footprint across Europe and 99.9 per cent availability. The service will be transferred, without interruption, in January 1999 to Eutelsat W2 for an even larger footprint, taking in North Africa and the Middle East, the company said.

AT&T-Unisource Communications Services serves 3,000 corporate customers with voice, data, Internet and messaging services.