published weekly by Angus TeleManagement Group
Number 497: September 16, 2005
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** VONAGE CANADA: www.vonage.ca
IN THIS ISSUE:
** Cellcos Want Two Years to Make Numbers Portable
** CRTC Wants Comment on Wireless Portability
** Rogers and Bell Plan Wireless Broadband Net
** Telus--Over Half of Alberta TWU Members Working
** FCC to Aid in Hurricane Relief
** Zarlink Offers "Timing Over Packet" Devices
** Policy Panel Receives Second-Round Submissions
** Comments Invited on VoIP Appeals to Cabinet
** CCTA Wants Small CLECs' Obligations Reduced
** CRTC Asks Bell to Clarify VoIP Number Portability Issues
** Aliant Denied Relief on Winback & Promotion Rules
** Quebecor Says Bell is Violating Winback Rules
** RIM Faces New Suit
** Nokia to Launch Push Email
** EBay Snaps Up Skype
** U.S. Congress Reviews Telecom Act
** Nortel Legal Chief Resigns
** Aliant Names New CFO
** Special Offer to Telecom Update Readers
CELLCOS WANT TWO YEARS TO MAKE NUMBERS PORTABLE: If a plan proposed by
the wireless carriers is implemented, Canadians won't be able to keep
their phone numbers when they switch wireless carriers, or switch
between wireline and wireless, until September 2007. The proposal,
based on a PricewaterhouseCoopers report commissioned by the Canadian
Wireless Telecommunications Association, has been submitted to
** Wireless Number Portability has been operating across the
United States for nearly two years. Early this year, the
federal government asked the CRTC to "move expeditiously
to implement wireless number portability."
** Richard Branson, head of Virgin Mobile, charges that "the
big carriers are dragging their heels on giving customers
the freedom they deserve because it works to their
advantage -- it helps to keep their customers locked in with
one carrier." He says the change could be made "in only a
CRTC WANTS COMMENT ON WIRELESS PORTABILITY: CRTC Telecom Public Notice
2005-14, issued at 2pm today, asks for public comment on issues
related to the introduction of Wireless Number Portability, including
ways to shorten the implementation time frame proposed by the CWTA. To
participate, notify the Commission by September 26 and submit comments
by October 6.
ROGERS AND BELL PLAN WIRELESS BROADBAND NET: Rogers Communications and
Bell Canada have agreed to pool their broadband spectrum holdings and
build a Canada-wide wireless broadband network through a joint
venture, Inukshuk Internet.
** This project was begun early in 2004, when Inukshuk
was owned by Microcell (Fido), Allstream, and NR
Communications. Last year Rogers acquired Microcell and
MTS bought Allstream. MTS then sold its stake in Inukshuk
to Rogers and NR, and Bell has now agreed to buy all of
NR's share. (See Telecom Update #409, 423, 467)
TELUS -- OVER HALF OF ALBERTA TWU MEMBERS WORKING: Telus says that
52.6% of its unionized employees in Alberta were reporting for work as
of August 31, up from 48.8% in mid-August. The company has not
released any figures for British Columbia, where a majority of the
bargaining unit members are located.
FCC TO AID IN HURRICANE RELIEF: The U.S. Federal Communications
Commission has allocated $211 million from the Universal Service Fund
to aid victims of Hurricane Katrina. Among other things, the funds
will provide wireless handsets and 300 free minutes to evacuees and
others, and will help pay the costs of reconnecting consumers to the
telecommunications network as the disaster-struck area is rebuilt.
** The Commission is creating an expert panel to recommend
ways to improve disaster preparedness, network
robustness and reliability, and public safety operations.
ZARLINK OFFERS "TIMING OVER PACKET" DEVICES: Ottawa-based Zarlink
Semiconductor has introduced two Timing-over-Packet devices, which aim
to enable wireless carriers to achieve "circuit-switched performance
over an economic packet infrastructure."
POLICY PANEL RECEIVES SECOND-ROUND SUBMISSIONS: September 15 was the
deadline for reply comments to be submitted to the Telecom Policy
Review. All comments will be posted on the panel's website.
** Archived presentations from last week's broadband
consultation in Whitehorse, and the Web forum on the same
topic, are also available on the panel's website.
COMMENTS INVITED ON VoIP APPEALS TO CABINET: Industry Canada has published
a notice in the Canada Gazette, inviting comment on the various appeals
submitted to Cabinet requesting changes to the CRTC's VoIP decision (see
Telecom Update #488, 490, 492).
CCTA WANTS SMALL CLECs' OBLIGATIONS REDUCED: The Canadian Cable
Telecommunications Association says that many of its small members
want to offer VoIP by contracting with a reseller, but this makes it
impossible for them to comply with some of the CLEC obligations, such
as interconnecting with other carriers, providing equal access to all
long distance carriers, or supporting number portability.
CRTC ASKS BELL TO CLARIFY VoIP NUMBER PORTABILITY ISSUES: The CRTC has
asked Bell Canada to explain why its Digital Voice service does not
support number portability on secondary numbers, and how the telco
plans to remedy this limitation (see Telecom Update #496).
ALIANT DENIED RELIEF ON WINBACK & PROMOTION RULES: The CRTC has turned
down Aliant's request for interim relief from the rules restricting
its winback and local promotion activity in Nova Scotia and P.E.I. The
Commission said removing these rules prematurely could reduce
competition. The substantive issues will be examined in the local
forbearance proceeding and in the Bell/SaskTel application to have
winback rules declared a Charter violation.
QUEBECOR SAYS BELL IS VIOLATING WINBACK RULES: Quebecor, on behalf of
its subsidiary Videotron, says Bell Canada has been violating the
winback rules by addressing automated calls, "survey" calls, or mailed
cards to customers leaving Bell for Videotron. Quebecor wants the CRTC
to order Bell to stop such practices immediately.
RIM FACES NEW SUIT: A New York-based developer, Eatoni Ergonomics, is
suing Research In Motion, alleging that RIM is wrongly using its
patented keyboard technology. RIM has settled suits by several
high-tech companies but is still locked in a patent battle with NTP
NOKIA TO LAUNCH PUSH EMAIL: Nokia is developing software to push email
and business applications to smartphones and other mobile
devices. Nokia Business Centre, developed in collaboration with Good
Technology, will be available from some carriers by year-end.
EBAY SNAPS UP SKYPE: Online auctioneer eBay has agreed to buy Skype
Technologies, an Internet phone company based in Luxembourg, for about
US$2.6 billion. More than 50 million users have signed up for Skype's
free worldwide computer-to-computer calling service.
U.S. CONGRESS REVIEWS TELECOM ACT: The Energy and Commerce Committee
of the U.S. House of Representatives is asking for public comment on
draft amendments to the 1996 Telecommunications Act. The amendments
would set a framework for regulating broadband Internet and VoIP
NORTEL LEGAL CHIEF RESIGNS: Nortel Networks Chief Legal Officer
Nicolas DeRoma has retired. DeRoma, 59, joined Nortel in 1997.
ALIANT NAMES NEW CFO: Aliant has named its VP Finance and Controller
Glen Leblanc as Chief Financial Officer. The post has been filled
since February by CEO Jay Forbes.
SPECIAL OFFER TO TELECOM UPDATE READERS: It's just four weeks until
Telemanagement Live, Canada's preeminent conference and exhibition on
business telecom and networking. Telecom Update subscribers who
register online now will receive a $200 discount on an All Access
pass, including all sessions and meals and a ticket to the
Telecommunications Hall of Fame Dinner.
** To qualify, register at http://www.telemanagementlive.com and
enter AMBP95 in the "promotional code" field.
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