Rochester Telephone selects vendors for optical access technologies

March 3, 2003--Rochester Telephone Company Inc. (RTC--Rochester, IN) has selected General Bandwidth (Austin, TX) to deliver voice services to those customers in Northern Indiana served by RTC's fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) offering. In a related annoucement, RTC has also selected Wave7 Optics (Alpharetta, GA) to build a new broadband network using Wave 7's Last Mile Link (LML) system.

General Bandwidth (Austin, TX), a telecommunications equipment provider enabling carriers to deliver enhanced voice services over broadband networks, has been selected by Rochester Telephone Company Inc. (RTC--Rochester, IN) to deliver voice services to customers in Northern Indiana that are being served by RTC's fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) service offering. RTC also selected Wave7 Optics (Alpharetta, GA) to build a new multi-million dollar broadband network using Wave 7's Last Mile Link (LML) system.

General Bandwidth's G6 platform will be an integral part of service availability to more than 8700 subscribers in Indiana as RTC seeks to upgrade their entire access network to a fiber-based architecture.

General Bandwidth's G6 was selected as a voice-over-IP (VoIP) access and media gateway. The G6 is fully optimized for mass deployments and meets or exceeds the most stringent requirements for central office environments. In addition, RTC is deploying the G6 platform with the new Gigabit Ethernet module that connects directly to RTC's IP-based access network.

Wave 7's LML provides up to 300 times more capacity and speed than existing broadband systems offered by cable television and telephone companies ¿ primarily cable modem and digital subscriber Line (DSL). Rochester plans to deploy the LML over the next 24 months, with 1500 homes and business connected by year-end 2003.

The LML is known as a "fiber to the home/business" architecture, which features a fiber-optic line premises connection instead of a traditional telephone or cable line. Because of the inherent high-bandwidth capabilities of fiber and Wave7's exclusive architectural cost advantages, Rochester can provide each of their customers access speeds from
256 Kbits/sec up to a maximum of 500 Mbits/sec at an installation price comparable to using existing cable or telephone lines.

Unlike the vast majority of competing broadband systems, these figures are symmetrical--meaning a user can send information at a rate equal to the download speed. The LML accommodates all existing home and business telephone and computer systems, meaning customers do not have to buy new equipment to get on the new network.

The LML is a standards-based advanced optical access system that provides all traditional carrier-grade telephone services (including fax), high-speed data (e.g., Internet service) and both analog and digital video (including IP streaming video). Featuring privacy and security encryption techniques, as well as quality of service mechanisms designed for business applications, the LML overcomes the high-fiber counts, limited distance range and high "central office" equipment costs that have stymied the growth of FTTx systems.

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