Bet You Thought 411 Was Just for Phone Numbers; Well, Not Any More!

PHILADELPHIA - Callers who dial 411 typically want to get a phone number; however, for Pennsylvania callers, starting today there's more to this directory assistance service than phone listings.

Callers in Pennsylvania will now hear the following slightly expanded 411 greeting, which will allow them to ask for any one of several expanded services: "Verizon Nationwide 411. We provide listings, reverse number search and business categories. Say a city and state or say other 411 services."

Kitty Linder, president of Verizon LiveSource and Public Communications, said, "We've enhanced Verizon's Directory Assistance to give callers one place to get the information they need quickly so they can move on to their next project or activity. It's easy now to have one of our operators find, for instance, a shoe repair shop or a type of restaurant in your neighborhood or even look up a phone number you don't recognize and give you the name."

The business category search is like searching the Yellow Pages for a plumber or flower shop; the operator will search for a particular type of business in a particular area and offer up to three listings, randomly selected from area business listings.

"If you can't remember the name of a Greek restaurant you visited last month, but know what area it's in, our specially trained operator will help you find it," said Linder. "If something goes wrong and you need a plumber right now, 411 is your answer. Don't bother trying to look it up yourself. Simply dial 411, and one of our operators will get you the information you need."

On average, the 411 automated system can produce a telephone number in less than 30 seconds. If the search word is not clear or there are too many similar entries for the system to narrow the choice, the call will be transferred to a live operator for further assistance.

When callers need more information than a telephone number, the Verizon voice recognition system will transfer them to a live operator.  The operator will assist with their request for an address; get the country code for an international call; or conduct a reverse number search where the caller provides a telephone number and gets the name or business associated with that number.

"Many of these services were available before, but most of our customers didn't know how to access them, or didn't know we offer additional services," said Linder. "Based on our customers' feedback, we've made improvements to 411 that will give them one place to find the pertinent information they need, quickly and easily."

All calls to 411 requesting more information than a basic telephone number look-up will be routed to an operator. The charge for calls made to 411 in Pennsylvania for local numbers is $1.25. Business category searches cost $1.25 per item searched. National Directory Assistance costs $1.50. 

LiveSource is Verizon's business organization that handles more than 3 million directory assistance calls each day in support of Verizon landline customers. LiveSource has more than 60 call centers and is also the No. 1 wireless directory assistance provider in the United States.

For more information on Verizon, visit www.verizon.com.

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 63.7 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 nearly 238,000 and last year generated consolidated operating revenues of more than $88 billion.  For more information, visit www.verizon.com.