DirecTV Broadband Going Vo-IP Route

In a move that signals an entry into the high-speed Voice-over Internet
Protocol (Vo-IP) market, DirecTV Broadband on Tuesday announced a deal with
Texas Instruments to roll out voice-enabled DSL gateways to
residential customers in the U.S.

DirecTV Broadband, a satellite TV company which offers residential DSL Internet service, said the partnership with Texas Instruments
would clear the way for the deployment of DSL gateways in late 2002. The
gateways allows DirecTV Broadband to sell add-on Vo-IP services like data
routing, support for two digital voice lines and home network interfaces.

DirecTV Broadband, a subsidiary of Hughes Electronics , said
Texas Instruments would integrate the AR5V10 DSL gateway software into
a complete third generation DirecTV DSL gateway for consumer deployment
throughout the United States. “The gateways will also be equipped with home
networking technology to allow the sharing of broadband content and services
throughout the home,” the company said.

“The future of DSL is the addition of value-added services, such as voice,
to the data network to which we are accustomed. By working with DIRECTV
Broadband, we are enabling the next generation of DSL equipment and
deployments to deliver voice and data over DSL with home networking to
consumers,” said Joseph Crupi, VP of Texas Instruments’ Broadband
Communications Group.

Ned Hayes, CEO of DIRECTV Broadband, said the ability to offer voice
services on broadband connections would “be a turning point for the DSL
industry.”

“By incorporating the voice service feature provided by Texas Instruments,
we will soon be ready to launch a Voice over IP solution that our
subscribers can use with a regular telephone. Our work to be one of the
first providers to offer such a service is exciting for our company and our
customers,” Hayes added.

While Vo-IP via broadband has been limited to business services in the past,
DirecTV is riding the wave of popularity for the services on the residential
market. And, it’s pinning its hopes on the user-friendliness of the
installation process. “The service enabled by DIRECTV Broadband and TI,
which can be installed by the user without the need to bring technicians
into the home, is on the cutting edge, and should be well received by
customers looking for additional phone lines for home offices, teen lines
and other uses.”

DirecTV Broadband was launched after Hughes Electronics acquired
broadband provider Telocity for $180 million in December 2001.

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