Verizon Introduces Three New Fixed-Mobile Convergence Services to Enhance Business Mobility

NEW YORK - To make it easier for businesses and government agencies to enhance employee mobility and productivity, Verizon is introducing three new fixed-mobile convergence (FMC) services.  The services help on-the-go professionals seamlessly bridge wireline and wireless networks.

The services, unveiled today at the NXTcomm trade show in Chicago, are: Wireless Office, PBX Mobile Extension and Mobile Conference Connection.

[NOTE: An audio podcast discussing these new services and the benefits to business and government customers is available by linking to the Verizon at NXTcomm press kit at http://newscenter2.verizon.com/kit/nxtcomm/.]

Features include: a single phone number that simultaneously rings to an office, home and cell phone; a unified mailbox that consolidates voicemail from multiple devices; and instant conference calls that can be organized and initiated with just a few clicks on any Research in Motion BlackBerry or Microsoft Windows Mobile smart phone or PDA. 

The new services are part of Verizon's overall mobility strategy, which builds on the power of the company's expansive, world-class wireline and wireless networks and advanced collaboration techniques.

The services are also the latest additions to Verizon's comprehensive suite of Mobility offerings, which enable professionals to seamlessly and securely conduct business while away from the office. The offerings include: wireless voice and data, managed wireless LAN, and Secure Gateway, which provides mobile users with access to their company's virtual private network.

In addition, the Mobility services feature Verizon's advanced collaboration tools including conferencing services (audio, Web and video), secure instant messaging and managed e-mail.

"Now, more than ever, busy professionals are demanding new tools to help stay on top of their business, both in and out of the office," said John Stratton, executive vice president and chief marketing officer for Verizon. "By bridging its world-class wired and wireless networks, Verizon is helping to enhance mobility and productivity in today's fast-paced, mobile work environment." 

Nineteen percent of large-business professionals are frequent travelers who spend significant time away from their offices and conduct increasing amounts of business on the move according to "The State of the Enterprise Telecom and Network Adoption," Forrester Research, June 2006.  As a result, businesses each year are spending more on mobile devices while also focusing greater attention on asset management and liability. 

With Wireless Office and PBX Mobile Extension, Employees' Offices Can Follow Where They Go

Wireless Office and PBX Mobile Extension provide wireless phone users with the same capabilities available on an office phone. 

Wireless Office, powered by the Verizon Wireless network, is immediately available for U.S. businesses.   It delivers a network-based solution for small and mid-sized businesses to merge their fixed and wireless voice communications by extending common private branch exchange (PBX) calling features -- such as abbreviated dialing, closed user groups and call control -- to wireless devices. 

The features enable small and mid-sized businesses to respond more quickly to their customers and make their communications more cost-efficient.  As a result, these businesses can compete more effectively with their larger rivals.  The service includes two different pricing options for either "on campus" wireless calling or on-net calling for calls that originate from a wireless handset to corporate office extensions.

PBX Mobile Extension enables a large corporate campus or large numbers of mobile workers -- including executives, sales personnel or field service technicians -- to answer calls and respond quickly.  This service, works with a company's existing PBX system to provide a single phone number that simultaneously rings on a user's cell phone, home phone or any pre-selected phone number.  If a user can't answer the call, PBX Mobile Extension uses a company's existing voice mail system to provide a unified voice mailbox, eliminating the inefficiencies of multiple voice mail systems.

In addition to making it easier for callers to reach a company's workforce, the service enhances calling for employees. Outbound calls by employees using cell phones show the caller's office phone number via caller ID. Cell phone callers also can use other PBX functions such as call-transfer, park, hold and more.

With PBX Mobile Extension, workers can also move seamlessly between their cell phone and a desk phone to complete a call in progress, conduct quick and secure conference calls, and initiate mass notifications enabling companies to quickly respond to planned or unplanned situations.  The service will be available in the United States starting next month, and Verizon plans to roll it out internationally in 2008.

On-the-Go Virtual Meetings Take New Shape With Mobile Conference Connection

Mobile Conference Connection helps busy workers quickly and easily coordinate spontaneous meetings and boost productivity away from the office.  This new offering, targeted for launch this summer, provides road warriors with the tools right at their fingertips to initiate or join a conference call with a few clicks on any Research in Motion BlackBerry or Microsoft Windows Mobile smart phone or PDA.  For example, Mobile Conference Connection allows Instant Meeting leaders in North America, Europe, Middle East, Asia-Pacific and Latin America to enter their Instant Meeting Subscription information on their mobile device.   This enables the meeting leaders to initiate and schedule spontaneous meetings, send e-mail meeting invitations, start meetings, and add participants to conference calls via a link embedded in an e-mail invitation that participants receive via their mobile registered device.  In addition, participants or leaders can join audio calls by having a conference call bridge "dial out'' to contact them.

Users of Verizon's Global BlackBerry 8830 service can use Mobile Conference Connection to initiate or participate in conference calls from 150 countries worldwide.  In addition, Global Blackberry users benefit from e-mail and Internet connections in 90 countries.

More Mobility Services Planned

"Today's announcements enhance our existing Mobility portfolio with new, simple and secure ways for workers to stay connected to the office," said Stratton. "We will continue to aggressively roll out products and services that best meet the needs of business customers round the world."

Additional new services Verizon plans to launch this year and next include:

  • Satellite access in Europe and Asia to enable companies without terrestrial access to remain connected to corporate resources.

  • Additional automatic wireless primary and backup access options to help enable companies to remain up and running.

  • Mobile satellite access where users can access their network in hard-to-reach areas such as mountainous regions. 

  • Integrated VoIP offerings to support mobile workers.

  • Managed Wireless backup to Private IP.

About Verizon
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), headquartered in New York, is a leader in delivering broadband and other wireline and wireless communication innovations to mass market, business, government and wholesale customers.  Verizon Wireless operates America's most reliable wireless network, serving 60.7 million customers nationwide.  Verizon's Wireline operations include Verizon Business, which delivers innovative and seamless business solutions to customers around the world, and Verizon Telecom, which brings customers the benefits of converged communications, information and entertainment services over the nation's most advanced fiber-optic network.  A Dow 30 company, Verizon has a diverse workforce of more than 238,000 and last year generated consolidated operating revenues of more than $88 billion.  For more information, visit www.verizon.com.