AT&T Asks FCC To Phase Out Landlines In Move To VoIP

Updated: January 07, 2011

In response to the FCC's request for public comment about the proposed move from regular landlines (PSTN) to an all IP network, AT&T has supported the move with its own plan and timeline for withdrawal from the PSTN. In its response AT&T also addresses its desire to see changes to regulatory policies around universal service, inter-carrier compensation and other related rules that it feels are inhibiting its ability to operate effectively in the new wired and wireless broadband environments.

AT&T took advantage of the FCC's request for public comment to submit a very detailed document that outlined its desire to see many changes made in the proposed move from the PSTN to an IP network. Besides clear support for the underlying goal of moving away from the PSTN, AT&T also wanted to make sure that it would not have to invest any more money and effort in supporting the PSTN. “Congress’s goal of universal access to broadband will not be met in a timely or efficient manner if providers are forced to continue to invest in and to maintain two networks,” AT&T officials said.

AT&T went on to argue that supporting the PSTN is holding back effective investment in new technologies. AT&T said that a web of federal and state regulations that support the PSTN is unnecessarily prolonging the life of the landline phone network. AT&T also wants the government to issue a firm and aggressive timetable for the shift to an IP network and decommissioning the PSTN.

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