WilTel and Bell Atlantic announce NNI connections

JACKSON, Miss. (February 20, 1995)-- Customers of WilTel, a wholly owned subsidiary of LDDS Communications, and Bell Atlantic now have a powerful way to link their local area and other data communications networks.

The companies today announced connectivity using the Network-to-Network Interface (NNI) standard. Commercial availability is expected during the second quarter of 1995. "This NNI connection is part of WilTel's effort to establish NNI connections with each of the regional Bell operating companies," said Dawn Honeyman, product manager for WilTel. "This service will benefit customers who require multi-LATA, multi-state and multi-LEC (local exchange carrier) frame relay networks." "We are pleased to work with WilTel, and we expect the ability to interconnect our frame relay networks will help stimulate a market that is already growing at a very aggressive pace," said Tim Stevens, director of advanced product management for Bell Atlantic's Carrier Services line of business.

Late last year WilTel and Bell Atlantic successfully tested connectivity between the two networks. Tests included host-to-host connectivity, interactive sessions and transfers of large files using a port connection of T1 speed. Other tests assessed performance of the connections between Bell Atlantic's Cascade platform and WilTel's network. Private lines will connect the two networks since none of Bell Atlantic's switches are collocated with WilTel switches. Port speeds go up to T1 on both networks. CIR (Committed Information Rates) range from 8 Kbps to half the port speed on all port sizes of the Bell Atlantic network.

WilTel offers CIR at 16 Kbps, 32 Kbps, 48 Kbps, 56 Kbps or any increment of 64 Kbps, up to a maximum of 1.024 Mbps. Both networks encourage bursting. Pricing is not based on mileage or usage. The Bell Atlantic Carrier Services line of business provides switched, special and wireless access to Bell Atlantic's telecommunications network. Carrier Services also is developing new wireless services, such as personal communications services, new access services such as Facilities Management Service, and increased network survivability using Bell Atlantic IntelliLight services, which use synchronous optical network (SONET)-based fiber-optic ring technology.

Bell Atlantic Corporation, based in Philadelphia, is the parent of companies that provide a full array of local exchange telecommunications services in the mid-Atlantic region. The corporation is at the forefront of developing a variety of new products, including video, entertainment and information services. Bell Atlantic also owns an interest in Telecom Corporation of New Zealand and is the parent of companies that provide business systems services for customer-based information technology throughout the U.S. and internationally. In addition, Bell Atlantic is the parent of one of the nation's largest cellular carriers and has an ownership in cellular properties internationally, including Grupo Iusacell, S.A. de C.V., Mexico's largest independent cellular company.

WilTel is a full-service telecommunications company that offers domestic and international data, voice and video products and services to carriers and large business customers. WilTel operates a nationwide digital fiber-optic network for its parent company, LDDS, which is one of the four largest U.S.-based long-distance carriers. The shares of LDDS Communications Inc. trade on The NASDAQ Stock Market under the symbol LDDS.