published weekly by Angus TeleManagement Group
Number 550: October 13, 2006
Publication of Telecom Update is made possible by generous
financial support from:
** AVAYA: www.avaya.ca/
** BELL CANADA: www.bell.ca/home/Home_Business.page
** CISCO SYSTEMS CANADA: www.cisco.com/ca/
** ERICSSON: www.ericsson.ca
** MICROSOFT CANADA: www.microsoft.ca/communications/
** NEC UNIFIED SOLUTIONS: www.necunifiedsolutions.com
** ROGERS TELECOM: www.rogers.com/solutions
** SHAW BUSINESS SOLUTIONS: www.shawbusinesssolutions.ca
** VONAGE CANADA: www.vonage.ca
IN THIS ISSUE:
** Bell Canada Takes the Income Trust Road
** BCE -- R.I.P.
** Vonage Expands Coverage
** Ontario Bill Seeks New-Driver Cellphone Ban
** Bell and Bell Aliant File 8-1-1 Tariffs
** More Time to Comment on Bell, Telus Rate Hikes
** Industry Canada Tests VoIP Security
** Fido Opens Burnaby Call Centre
** Mitec Raises $4 Million
** U.S. Carrier to Trial Wi-Fi/Cellular Phone
** U.S. to Allow Low-Power Devices in TV Spectrum
** AT&T/Bellsouth Merger Gets Antitrust Okay
** Applications Invited for Jeanne Sauve Awards
** Communications Institute Sets Program
** Telehealth Experts Gather in Edmonton
** Rx for Network Planning Nightmares
BELL CANADA TAKES THE INCOME TRUST ROAD: In a move that could reduce the
company's annual tax bill by hundreds of millions of dollars, BCE is
proposing to convert Bell Canada into an income trust. After approval by
regulators and by a shareholders' meeting in January, BCE common shares
will be exchanged on a one-for-one basis for units in the new Bell
Canada Income Fund, and Bell will buy back all preferred shares.
** Simultaneously, Bell Aliant is proposing to acquire the
36.4% of Bell Nordiq it doesn't now hold, a move that
would merge those two income funds into one company.
BCE -- R.I.P.: As part of the income trust conversion, Bell Canada
will eliminate its holding company, BCE Inc., which was created in
1983 to shield Bell's non-telco operations from CRTC regulation. Over
the years BCE has purchased companies as diverse as Trans Canada
Pipelines, Montreal Trust, Teleglobe, and CTV -- and in every case
took substantial losses when it sold them.
** CEO Michael Sabia says that elimination of BCE reflects
"our plan to focus on Bell and our communications
operations. That is the business we know. That is the
business we will stick to."
VONAGE EXPANDS COVERAGE: Vonage Canada has added 25 communities in
Ontario, British Columbia, Alberta, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and
PEI to the list of locations where it offers local phone numbers. The
VoIP provider now offers local numbers in 70 Canadian cities and
ONTARIO BILL SEEKS NEW-DRIVER CELLPHONE BAN: A private member's bill
that would ban new drivers from using cellphones while driving has
received second reading in the Ontario legislature. The Ontario
government has not indicated whether it will support the proposal.
Similar measures have been implemented in 11 U.S. states. (See Telecom
BELL AND BELL ALIANT FILE 8-1-1 TARIFFS: Bell Canada and Bell Aliant
have filed tariffs for 8-1-1 service, which will route calls to the
appropriate "non-urgent health teletriage service providers" within a
province. (See Telecom Update #488) The telcos have requested approval
by October 20, with six months notice required to implement the service.
** The telcos' nomadic VoIP services will not be able to route 8-1-1
MORE TIME TO COMMENT ON BELL, TELUS RATE HIKES: As promised, the CRTC
has combined into one proceeding the Telus and Bell Canada/Bell Aliant
proposals to raise local rates while eliminating connection charges for =
new or moving customers. The public now has until December 11 to comment
on the applications. (See Telecom Update #547)
** So far, the CRTC has received nearly 1,700 complaints from
Bell and Bell Aliant customers regarding their proposed
INDUSTRY CANADA TESTS VoIP SECURITY: Industry Canada's Protocol Analysis
Lab is testing software that protects against security breaches in VoIP
networks. The host-based software, developed by Ottawa start-up Third
Brigade Inc, inspects traffic streams for malicious code and protocol
FIDO OPENS BURNABY CALL CENTRE: Rogers' Fido division says it will
employee 130 staffers in the $2.4-million call centre it has just
opened in Burnaby, B.C.
MITEC RAISES $4 MILLION: Mitec Telecom, a Montreal-based wireless
equipment maker, has raised $4.3 million in equity and hopes to raise
an additional $3.5 million by October 16.
U.S. CARRIER TO TRIAL WI-FI/CELLULAR PHONE: T-Mobile USA says it will
soon begin trials of a mobile phone that can hand off calls between
Wi-Fi and cellular networks. Introduction of such phones has been long
delayed by opposition from most cellcos.
U.S. TO ALLOW LOW-POWER DEVICES IN TV SPECTRUM: The U.S. Federal
Communications Commission has agreed to let new low-power wireless
devices operate in parts of the TV broadcast spectrum that are not
used for other purposes. Marketing of the devices won't be allowed
until February 18, 2009, the date when full conversion of
U.S. broadcast television to digital is supposed to be complete.
AT&T/BELLSOUTH MERGER GETS ANTITRUST OKAY: U.S. antitrust authorities
have approved AT&T Inc's US$79 billion purchase of Bell South Corp. A
ruling by the federal telecom regulator is expected today.
** The deal will create the largest U.S. carrier, combining
the six formerly separate telecom giants: AT&T, Bell
South, Southwestern Bell, Pacific Telesis, Ameritech, and
Cingular Wireless. (See Telecom Update #467, 520)
APPLICATIONS INVITED FOR JEANNE SAUVE AWARDS: Canadian Women in
Communications is inviting women managers in telecommunications and
broadcasting to apply for the 2007 Jeanne Sauve awards, which provide
intensive internships in communications policy. Application deadline
is 5 pm, December 6.
COMMUNICATIONS INSTITUTE SETS PROGRAM: The Canadian chapter of the
International Institute of Communications will hold its annual
conference in Ottawa December 4-5. Program and registration
information is available now at the IIC's website,
TELEHEALTH EXPERTS GATHER IN EDMONTON: The Canadian Society of
Telehealth is holding its ninth annual conference October 14-17 at the
Shaw Convention Centre in Edmonton, Alberta.
Rx FOR NETWORK PLANNING NIGHTMARES: The unruly mix of emerging
products and services, changing suppliers, and new applications can
create a planning nightmare for enterprise telecom and
networking. Henry Dortmans, John Riddell, and Michael Dunne head the
roster of top telecom experts at "Enterprise Networks 2006," which
offers exclusive insights into maximizing the effectiveness of your IP
systems and networks.
** Enterprise Networks 2006 will be held at the Metro Toronto
Convention Centre October 24-25. Register online at
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