Denver -- February 10, 1998 (Nasdaq: QWST) - Qwest, a multimedia communications company building the world's most advanced fiber optic network, today began commercial service for its phone-to-phone IP telephony service, Q.talkSM, with customers using the service in all nine introductory cities. Leveraging its high bandwidth, technologically advanced Macro CapacitySM fiber network, Qwest is the first company to deliver to customers a high quality phone-to-phone service at 7.5-cents per minute, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Because of its enormous network bandwidth, Qwest is the only company offering uncompressed service, which allows the sound quality and reliability of each call to equal that of traditional phone service. Q.talk service began today in the following nine cities: Anaheim, Los Angeles, Oakland, Sacramento, San Francisco and San Jose, California; Salt Lake City, Utah; Denver, Colorado; and Kansas City, Missouri.
"The advancement of Internet telephony is today being realized on the Qwest Macro Capacity fiber network," said Joseph P. Nacchio, president and CEO of Qwest. "We welcome our new customers and hope they enjoy the savings of Q.talk with all of their family and friends."
7.5-Cents a Minute - IP Voice Service, Q.talk Qwest's domestic, long distance IP service, Q.talk, is now being offered to consumers, through a controlled introduction, at 7.5-cents per minute for state-to-state calls with no monthly fees, no hourly or daily restrictions, and no requirements for credit cards or pre-paid calling cards. Q.talk is available now in nine cities and will expand its service offering to approximately 25 cities by mid-1998, and will further expand the service in conjunction with the planned network buildout.
User-Friendly To place a long distance phone call using Q.talk, a customer will make a local call to access the Qwest IP network, then enter his/her own password and then dial the destination number.
High Quality, Uncompressed Voice A traditional phone call contains the bandwidth of 64 kbps. Most IP telephony services compress the voice to 13 kpbs in order to fit all the calls onto their networks, and this typically reduces the voice quality of the call. Due to the state-of-the-art architecture and high bandwidth of the Qwest network, the Q.talk phone-to-phone IP telephony service does not compress the user's voice. From the phone call's origination point to its destination point, the call will remain at 64 kbps.
The Qwest Macro CapacitySM Network Qwest's planned domestic 16,000 mile network will serve over 125 cities, which represent approximately 80 percent of the data and voice traffic originating in the United States, upon its scheduled completion in the second quarter of 1999. Currently, more than 3,600 miles are activated from Los Angeles to Columbus, Ohio; and from Dallas to Houston. Qwest is also extending its network 1,400 miles into Mexico with completion slated for late third quarter 1998.
The Qwest Macro Capacity Fiber network is designed with a highly reliable and secure bi-directional, line switching OC-192 SONET ring architecture. Upon completion, the network will offer a self-healing system that provides the ultimate security and reliability by allowing instantaneous rerouting in the event of a fiber cut.
Qwest Communications International Inc. (NASDAQ:QWST) is a multimedia communications company building a high-capacity, fiber optic network for the 21st century. With its cutting-edge technology, Qwest will deliver high-quality data, video and voice connectivity securely and reliably to businesses, consumers and other communications service providers.
This release may contain forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. These statements may differ materially from actual future events or results. Readers are referred to the documents filed by Qwest with the SEC, specifically the most recent reports on Form 10-Q, which identify important risk factors that could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, including potential fluctuations in quarterly results, dependence on new product development, rapid technological and market change, failure to complete the network on schedule, volatility of stock price, financial risk management and future growth subject to risks.
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