GTE To Sell Wholesale Internet Access To ISPs

New "ISP Direct" Service Gives Internet Service Providers Access to GTE Internetworking's High-Speed Internet Backbone and Dedicated Support Staff at up to 40 Percent Cost Savings

BURLINGTON, Mass. - GTE Internetworking, a division of GTE Corporation (NYSE: GTE), today announced the availability of ISP Direct, a new service designed to give U.S.-based Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and University customers access to its tier-one Internet backbone. Unlike other wholesale offers that simply allow ISPs to re-sell their Internet connections, ISP Direct includes a dedicated support staff and prices that can generate savings of up to 40 percent.

ISP Direct is offered in two service levels and is available immediately to customers with a number of connection types and bandwidth options, including fixed or flex T1s and T3s, Multi-T1 and fractional T3s. The premium service level allows GTE Internetworking experts to monitor and troubleshoot a customer's local loop circuit, while the standard service allows customers to monitor and troubleshoot their own local loop connection. Ethernet connections are also available in selected cities. GTE Internetworking assists with limited router configuration support during the provisioning process and provides sales, implementation and technical support groups dedicated to ISP Direct customers.

"As a business-oriented Internet provider, we have customers who demand high up-time and fast, reliable connections," said Ralph Jenson, vice president of operations for gofast.net. "We've found that GTE's ISP Direct service is reliable, dependable and affordable solution for our Minneapolis/St. Paul customers. GTE's robust infrastructure helps us provide high quality service at very reasonable rates, while ISP Direct's dedicated support means we can respond quickly to our customers' needs."

ISP Direct gives ISPs immediate access to all levels of support through GTE Internetworking, while the customer retains responsibility for ordering and maintaining all equipment, as well as ordering, provisioning and payment of all local loop circuits. Service providers who want to expand their markets without extensive overhead costs or build-out fees have the option of using the ISP Direct equipment collocation service. Currently available at the Chicago, Metropolitan Area Exchange West, Seattle and Minneapolis Points of Presence (POPs), the collocation service provides customers with all the necessary power and environmentals needed to quickly and cost effectively establish their service delivery point.

"With the combination of GTE's network infrastructure and a dedicated support team, ISP Direct provides quality, dependable network connections and client support at substantial cost savings," said Susan Birkenheier, ISP Direct Service Line Manager. "We are anticipating customer needs by providing the connection, service and management they require to build a competitive local or national ISP offering."

GTE's current backbone consists of OC3 and OC12 links to major metropolitan cities around the country and uses primary public and private peering locations for seamless connections to the Internet. The Global Network Infrastructure (GNI), GTE's new OC192 backbone, integrates the latest networking technologies, offering customers more bandwidth, quicker throughput and greater reliability. Available by year-end 1999, this new high-speed fiber network will enable mission critical applications and services such as ISP Direct.

GTE Internetworking also offers ISPs ATM, Frame Relay and Private Line services based on the GNI.

About GTE Internetworking

GTE Internetworking, a unit of GTE Corporation (NYSE:GTE) offers customers, from consumers to Fortune 500 companies, a full spectrum of integrated Internet services using IP networking technologies. GTE Internetworking delivers complete network solutions, including dial-up and dedicated Internet access, high-performance Web hosting, managed Internet security, network management, systems integration, and Web-based application development for integrating the Internet into business operations. GTE Internetworking draws upon its expertise in funded research and development of advanced technologies, including satellites, digital radio, multigigabit routers, security, and speech, and GTE's strong existing telecommunications services, including local and long distance, wireless, paging, video, and Internet. GTE is one the world's largest telecommunications companies and a leading provider of integrated voice, video and data services. More information about GTE Internetworking and GTE Corp. can be found on the Internet at http://www.gte.com.

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Internet Advantage is a service mark of GTE Internetworking Corporation.