Best Buy Partners with 3Com, Bell Atlantic to Offer ADSL Modem Technology to Consumers

Alliance Provides Best Buy Customers with Ultra-Fast Internet Access in the Washington, D.C. Area

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MINNEAPOLIS,MN -- Beginning Jan. 16, seven Washington, D.C.-area Best Buy locations will offer consumers one-stop shopping for high-speed Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) service from 3Com and Bell Atlantic.

For the first time, consumers will be able to qualify their phone lines, order DSL service and purchase a 3Com and Bell ADSL Home Connection Kit from a participating Best Buy store. The kit includes a 3Com&reg HomeConnectTM ADSL modem and all the hardware, software and information they need to use Bell high-speed Internet access service, powered by Bell Atlantic InfospeedSM DSL service.

"Broadband services provide the power to change the way Best Buy customers work and play," said Pete Bosse, Best Buy vice president - Digital Communication Services. "ADSL is another way to enhance our customers' time and give them more options to stay connected."

When Best Buy customers buy a 3Com and Bell ADSL Home Connection Kit, getting Bell service up and running is a snap. Consumers can order Bell service in the store or at home online. They can also self install the HomeConnect modem, or have it installed by a Best Buy technician for a nominal fee. Either way, there's no waiting at home for a visit from a Bell Atlantic technician.

"By making our Home Connection kit available at Best Buy stores, we're making it easier for consumers to get started with Infospeed DSL, from qualification to service activation to installation," said Fred D'Alessio, group president - consumer services for Bell Atlantic. "We're committed to making DSL services as accessible and easy to use as possible for our broadband customers."

Jerry Devlin, vice president and general manager for 3Com's Personal Connectivity Division, commented, "3Com and Bell Atlantic's innovative DSL solution at Best Buy stores aims to simplify the broadband qualification and purchase process, making installation and service activation easier for consumers. This strategic relationship represents another major leap forward for consumers anxiously awaiting the benefits of dedicated, high-speed Internet access."

3Com representatives will be in Washington, D.C.-area stores on Jan. 16 to answer questions and help consumers determine if Bell Atlantic Infospeed DSL service is available to them. Personal Infospeed DSL service can then be activated from a Bell Atlantic facility within approximately seven business days once customers place their orders online, either in the store or at home.

At $49.95 per month, Bell Atlantic's Personal Infospeed package - which includes Bell Internet access - features speeds up to 640 kilobits per second (Kbps) with unlimited use. Best Buy shoppers can purchase the Home Connection kit for $229.99. After 60 days of continuous service with Bell service, customers will receive $130 cash back. The rebate offer is available for orders received through the end of March.

Infospeed DSL - Bell Atlantic's brand name for DSL - is a digital high- speed service that provides an "always-on" link to the global Internet, taking advantage of unused capacity in existing telephone lines. DSL allows consumers to use a single phone line to send faxes or make phone calls while simultaneously surfing the Internet.

About Best Buy Co., Inc. Minneapolis-based Best Buy Co., Inc. (NYSE: BBY) is the nation's largest volume specialty retailer of consumer electronics, personal computers, entertainment software and appliances. The Company operates 354 stores in 37 states.

About 3Com Corporation With over 300 million customer connections worldwide, 3Com Corporation connects more people and organizations to information and each other in more innovative, simple and reliable ways than any other networking company. 3Com delivers e-Networking solutions through information access products and network systems to enterprises, small businesses, consumers, carriers and network service providers. 

About Bell Atlantic Bell Atlantic is at the forefront of the new communications and information industry. With more than 43 million telephone access lines and more than 10 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.

3Com is a registered trademark and HomeConnect is a trademark of 3Com Corporation. Bell Atlantic Infospeed DSL is a service mark of Bell Atlantic. All other company and product names may be trademarks of the respective companies with which they are associated.

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