Hughes Network Systems First Technology Partner To Become QwestLinked

Denver -- February 9, 1998 (Nasdaq: QWST) Qwest, a multimedia communications company building the world's most advanced fiber optic network, today announced that Hughes Network Systems (HNS) and Qwest will jointly offer frame relay and ATM (asynchronous transfer mode) solutions to the carrier market using the Qwest Macro Capacity Fiber Network and HNS Radiant&tm; multiservice edge switches. Qwest and Hughes have also engaged in a joint sales and marketing agreement to target the carrier market, including the designation of Hughes as the first QwestLinked technology partner.

"Working with Qwest and using their state-of-the-art network to deliver advanced frame relay and ATM transport solutions to carriers will further differentiate our advanced Radiant product line," said Jack Shaw, HNS chairman and CEO. "In a true spirit of partnership, Hughes and Qwest will together provide the essential support, training, equipment maintenance and network management services for our carrier customers."

Through its joint sales and marketing agreement, Qwest and HNS will together offer wholesale transport solutions to the Competitive Local Exchange Carrier (CLEC), Internet Service Provider (ISP), Independent Telephone Company (ITC), and carrier markets.

"We're pleased to join with Hughes in offering advanced data networking solutions," said Gregory M. Casey, senior vice president of Carrier Markets for Qwest. "With its Radiant multiservice edge switches and its unique carrier support offerings, Hughes is uniquely able to offer Qwest a turn-key, innovative, and cost-effective data solution for our carrier customers."

Hughes Network Systems Radiant CX5000 switches will be installed in the Qwest Network backbone enabling customers to offer frame relay and ATM services. The Radiant CX500 switching solution is a single-platform technology that provides backbone switching capabilities for ATM and frame relay, in addition to access services for frame relay, IP, SNA and X.25.

Hughes Becomes QwestLinked

Hughes Network Services has become the first QwestLinked technology partner. QwestLinked partners will include cutting-edge technology vendors and carriers using the Qwest network and world-class corporations who choose to transmit their data, voice and multimedia services over the Qwest Macro Capacity Fiber Network. To earn the QwestLinked distinction, Hughes Network Systems met rigorous standards and criteria in areas such as customer support, performance, market reputation and financial standing.

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, 3,500 miles are activated from Los Angeles to Cincinnati; 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.

About Qwest

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.

QwestLinked is a trademark, and the Qwest logo is a registered trademark of Qwest Communications International Inc. in the U.S. and certain other countries.

Contact Information
Media Contact
Diane Reberger
Outside Contacts:
Qwest Media Contact
Erin McKelvey
(303) 615-5070
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