Granite Telecom ready to take part in AT&T's IP transition trials

Granite Telecommunications, a competitive provider focused on providing services to multi-location businesses in the United States and Canada, said it plans on participating in AT&T's (NYSE: T) upcoming TDM-to-IP trials.

The trials are significant to Granite as it is one of the few alternative providers that offers voice service to a number of businesses where the transition trials will take place in Carbon Hill, Ala., and Kings Point, Palm Beach County, Fla.

Michael B. Galvin, Granite's general counsel, said that it will need details on how "Granite and its customers will receive functionally equivalent products to ensure competition is preserved."

Although the tests require regulatory approval, they will give the FCC more information on permitting AT&T and other traditional telcos to stop offering traditional wireline POTS service as more residential customers migrate toward wireless and over-the-top IP-based VoIP providers like Vonage (NYSE: VG) and Skype for voice service.  

During the trials, AT&T will test whether customers will be able to reach emergency 911 services and if people with medical devices and home security alarms can be assured they can still get a connection.

While the transition experiment will have clear implications for area residential customers, Granite's participation likely will illustrate its impact on businesses that depend on traditional telephone service to interact with their customers and conduct business.

"The presence of Granite in both wire centers that AT&T has proposed for its service-based experiments will provide an opportunity for the commission to clearly see the impact of the technology transition on competition," said Chip Pickering, CEO of COMPTEL, in a statement.

For more:
- see the release

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