Bell Atlantic Deploys New Digital Switch, Bringing Advanced Technology, Services To Langhorne Area

Bell Atlantic Deploys New Digital Switch,
Bringing Advanced Technology, Services
To Langhorne Area

Company Invests $5.7 Million to Upgrade, Expand
Local Telephone Network

April 26, 1999


Ells Edwards,

Sharon Shaffer,

LANGHORNE, Pa. -- Bell Atlantic has installed a new digital switch in
its Langhorne telephone office as part of a $5.7 million project to upgrade
the local telephone network and provide advanced telecommunications
services to its customers.

The state-of-the art digital switch replaces an analog switch, furthering
Bell Atlantic's commitment to have 100 percent digital call switching in
Pennsylvania by the end of the year 2000.

This new technology will allow Bell Atlantic to expand its ability to offer
advanced high-speed data services and provides additional reliability and
survivability in the Bell Atlantic network.

"This project is the latest evidence that Bell Atlantic is meeting our
commitment to deliver a state-of-the-art telecommunications network
throughout Pennsylvania," said Daniel J. Whelan, president of Bell
Atlantic - Pennsylvania. "We are accelerating our construction
schedules to provide rural and urban customers with high-speed access to
the Internet, work-at-home capabilities, as well as a host of other
innovative advanced services."

Whelan said Bell Atlantic has made major strides in deploying advanced
technology in its network:

  • Annual spending on the Pennsylvania network nearly doubled
    from $539 million in 1995 to more than $961 million in 1998.

  • Miles of fiber-optic cable in the commonwealth increased by
    66 percent from 474,450 in 1995 to 786,106 at the end of 1998.

  • Percentage of digital call-routing switches has grown from 90.3
    percent in 1995 to 96 percent at the end of 1998.

  • Bell Atlantic Infospeedsm DSL was launched in Pennsylvania last
    fall. Infospeed DSL is a high-speed, always-on Internet access
    services which enables consumers to connect to cyberspace at
    speeds up to 100 times faster than today's fastest analog modems.

"Bell Atlantic is keeping its promises to Pennsylvania,"
Whelan said. "We are building and enhancing a public
telecommunications network in Pennsylvania that is the finest in the world
and is a vital part of the commonwealth's economic infrastructure."

In addition to deploying the latest technology, Bell Atlantic has spent tens
of millions of dollars to open Pennsylvania's local telephone market to

"We have irreversibly opened our markets to competition,"
Whelan said. "We can't force the long distance giants or anyone else
to compete here, but anyone who genuinely wants to enter our markets can
do so."

Bell Atlantic is at the forefront of
the new communications and information industry. With 42 million
telephone access lines and 8.6 million wireless customers worldwide, Bell
Atlantic companies are premier providers of advanced wireline voice and
data services, market leaders in wireless services and the world's largest
publishers of directory information. Bell Atlantic companies are also
among the world's largest investors in high-growth global communications
markets, with operations and investments in 23 countries.