GTE introduces long-distance service in South Carolina: company now marketing the service in 24 states

IRVING, Texas -- GTE today began offering long-distance (interLATA) service to consumers in South Carolina. The new offering, marketed under the name GTE Easy Savings Plan,sm currently is available to customers in 24 states.

"The Telecommunications Act of 1996 now allows companies like GTE to deliver expanded services to customers," said Rob McCoy, president for

GTE Long Distance. "At GTE, we promised we would be quick to market once the bill became law, and we are making good on that promise.

"Customers are signing up for GTE Long Distance service because we offer what they want: savings, simplicity, a single bill, competitive rates, and -- just as important -- quality and reliable service they can count on," McCoy said.

GTE was the first major telecommunications company to begin offering long-distance (interLATA) services to its customers as allowed under The Telecommunications Act of 1996, signed into law in February. GTE began offering long-distance service on March 4, and plans to offer it by year-end in all 50 states.

One of the largest publicly held telecommunications companies in the world, GTE is the largest U.S.-based local telephone company and a leading cellular-service provider -- with wireline and wireless operations that form a market area covering about one-third of the country's population.