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FOLLOWING THE TELECOMMUNICATIONS INDUSTRY AND RELATED LEGAL TOPICS

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

AOL enters the Voice fray with AOL Phoneline

Today, AOL (LLC) announced the launch of voice integrated with instant messaging. The free service appears to give users a NANP telephone number, voicemail, and unlimited in-bound calling. For a fee, you can make outbound calls as well.

It looks like Broadwing is the carrier that is handling PSTN mediation as well as 911 and other carrier-type obligations.

Looks like an interesting VoIP application. Among other things, however, we wonder whether a "numbers"-based Universal Service contribution requirement would kill this fledgling service, not that the powers that be would mind, or anything.

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