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Netscape Bundles Net2Phone In Browser

Netscape Communications Corp. and IDT-subsidiary Net2Phone Wednesday announced a multi-year global distribution agreement calling for Net2Phone's PC-to-phone service to be exclusively bundled with Netscape's browser, Netscape Communicator.

Net2Phone will be featured as a button on the browser Personal Toolbar. The telephony service will also be highlighted on Netscape Netcenter, aiming to attract users to make phone calls directly from their computers.

With the incorporation of Net2Phone into Netscape's suite of services, users with one phone line can make phone calls and surf the Web at the same time. The companies say users can save up to 95 percent in calling costs since calls are placed directly through the Internet.

In addition, the companies said that Net2Phone will employ Netscape's e-commerce software for development of future Net2Phone e-commerce solutions including Click2Talk, Click2Call Me, easysurf.com and the Net2Phone Web site.

"The implications of this partnership are tremendously powerful in that it distinguishes our Internet browser by bridging the gap between the Internet and the conventional phone system," said Mike Homer executive vice president and general manager of Netscape's Netcenter division.

"We believe the future of telephony is linked to the Internet. By providing integration of PC-to-phone with one of the top leaders in the industry, Net2Phone will further establish itself as the premier provider of Web-based communications," said Howie Balter, chief executive officer of Net2Phone. "Our partnership with Netscape provides significant value to the Web experience."

"We believe that Net2Phone is a leading technology provider in the IP telephony space," said Marc Andreessen chief technology officer at Netscape. "We are looking forward to the technology benefits that this strategic relationship brings to Netscape."