WilTel announces network-to-network connectivity with GTE and SWBT

TULSA, Okla. -- WilTel, a wholly owned subsidiary of LDDS Communications, has successfully completed frame relay network-to-network interface (NNI) connections with GTE and Southwestern Bell Telephone Co. (SWBT). Commercial availability is expected during the second quarter of 1995.

Once service is available, customers will be able to interconnect with GTE's frame relay network in Florida and SWBT's frame relay network in Oklahoma, Texas, Missouri, Kansas and Arkansas through WilTel's WilPak frame relay network. Other states such as Washington, California, Texas and Oregon will be added based on customer demand. "This service expands WilTel's network range and means greater service availability for our customers," said Dawn Honeyman, product manager for WilTel. "This is just the beginning of our efforts to develop end-to-end frame relay service via NNI." Customers who benefit from NNI are those with multi-LATA, multi-state or multi-LEC networks.

The cost of the NNI PVC (permanent virtual circuit) will be consolidated based on a per PVC charge plus the allocated NNI port charge. While WilTel's platform is vendor independent, GTE uses both Cascade and AT&T BNS 2000 switches; SWBT uses Northern switches but is adding Newbridge switches to its network. Since the switches SWBT and GTE use are not collocated with WilTel switches, connections will be made using private lines. Port speeds on the NNI vary between WilTel and the two LECs.

However, service will be available up to the T1 level in most parts of the network. GTE Telephone Operations is the largest U.S.-based local telephone company, providing voice, video and data products and services through more than 22 million access lines in portions of the United States, Canada, South America, the Caribbean and the Pacific. GTE Telephone Operations, based in Irving, Texas, had total revenues of $15.8 billion in 1993. Its parent organization, GTE Corporation, is the fourth largest publicly owned telecommunications company in the world. Southwestern Bell Telephone, a wholly-owned subsidiary of SWB Communications Inc., provides telecommunications services to more than 10 million residential and business customers in Oklahoma, Texas, Missouri, Kansas and Arkansas.

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.