AOL Readying VoIP Service Launch

During a keynote at the Spring VON conference this week, AOL Chief Executive Officer Jonathan Miller announced that the nation's largest ISP would begin rolling IP phone service within 30 days. AOL has tapped Level 3 Communications Inc. as its primary network provider and Sonus Networks as its infrastructure equipment supplier. By working with Level 3, AOL says it will offer a full-featured phone service that includes E-911 and local number portability. 'This will be a regulatory compliant service from day one,' Miller said. The offering, to be called AOL Internet Phone Service, will launch on a limited basis 'targeted to AOL members in specific markets,' he said. Miller said that AOL plans to differentiate the VoIP service by integrating it with other communications features, including email, voice mail and AOL's famed instant messaging 'Buddy List.' With AOL's phone service Mille said 'the Buddy List becomes a dashboard for how you manage communications.' Building on AOL's current deal with sister company Time Warner Cable on broadband Internet services, Miller hinted voice could be next on the list. 'AOL is now part of Time Warner Cable's lead Internet offer, along with Road Runner,' Miller said. 'We plan to extend that into voice.'
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