RealTime IT News

Compuserve Rings in Europe

Compuserve announced today it will expand to include phone service to almost one million European subscribers, with the help of MediaRing Inc.

Under terms of the agreement, Compuserve will make MediaRing Talk communication software available free on its Web site. By using MediaRing Talk, the company stated that anyone with an Internet account can call anyone, anywhere, and talk as long and as frequently as they like for U.S.$4.95 per month.

"MediaRing offers a practical and complete software for Internet telephony," says Markus Krieg, business development manager for CompuServe Central Europe. "They are an ideal partner for Europe's leading Internet service provider because they offer a very cost effective telephony solution for our customers."

MediaRing's software is designed to detect a signal sent by the caller over a standard telephone line and automatically logs the recipient onto the Internet. MediaRing said the patent-pending application then searches for the calling party on the Internet and establishes a connection for voice communication. Callers and call recipients can work on other programs while awaiting calls or talking.

According to Krieg, CompuServe/Europe is offering MediaRing Talk through its German Communication Web site. Subsequently the service will roll out through the U.K., France, Netherlands and the balance of Europe, totally 850,000 potential customers, he added.

To promote the agreement, MediaRing will give CompuServe/Europe subscribers two months' free calling service, and will bundle CompuServe software in its MediaRing Talk software packages distributed with magazines and through retail outlets. The CompuServe/Europe software will include an offer for 30 days of unlimited free Internet access.