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BELL ATLANTIC AND FUTUREVISION JOIN FORCES TO BRING THE INFORMATION AGE TO NEW JERSEY

 TOMS RIVER, N.J., Dec. 15 /PRNewswire/ -- Bell Atlantic Corporation's (NYSE: BEL) New Jersey Bell unit today announced a 10-year agreement to provide FutureVision of America Corporation with video dial tone transmission services, enabling FutureVision to deliver entertainment and information services to approximately 38,000 homes and businesses in Dover Township, N.J.
 FutureVision's competition initially will be the incumbent cable television (TV) operator in Dover Township.
 New Jersey Bell will upgrade its network to a video dial tone system in Dover Township during the next several years using fiber optic technology provided by BroadBand Technologies Incorporated (BBT). The upgrade will require federal regulatory approval. New Jersey Bell's fiber-optic network will provide telephone service to Dover Township homes and businesses and will enable FutureVision to offer services to this same group of customers. (Note to Editors: see accompanying sidebar for details on the agreement with FutureVision.)
 FutureVision, based in Downington, Pa., is a newly formed company whose purpose is to market, manage and deliver television programming and video and information services beginning next summer. (Note to Editors: see related release from FutureVision, to move as DC008.)
 "We believe customers want as much choice and convenience as possible," said Bob Schena, president of FutureVision. "New Jersey Bell's network will enable us to provide unlimited information in a wide variety of forms and formats."
 FutureVision considers the switched, interactive, digital, broadband network New Jersey bell is deploying to be the electronic highway of the future -- a highway with exceptional flexibility.
 "FutureVision will be able to provide customized programming to specific neighborhoods, and we will be working with local residents to develop appropriate packages based on this capability," said Schena. "Initially, we will have 124 channels of video programming available from which we can choose as we develop these customized packages. Using New Jersey Bell's network, we will be able to deliver a customized mix of 60 channels to a given neighborhood. FutureVision's customers will choose from a list that has been tailored for their community.
 "Progress in the video dial tone world will be measured by the ease with which customers can reach unlimited video entertainment and informational programming rather than by simply increasing channel capacity. We believe that providing service over New Jersey Bell's network is absolutely the way to go for the future."
 The agreement between FutureVision and Bell Atlantic calls for the two companies to explore the development of new services in the future. The agreement also opens the possibility for FutureVision to expand beyond the initial service area. In time, FutureVision may provide other entertainment and information services that will also compete with services from Bell Atlantic.
 "The old model of cable companies vs. telephone companies is no longer appropriate," said Art Bushkin, president of information services for Bell Atlantic. "FutureVision's decision to use New Jersey Bell facilities is evidence that, as we move into the video dial tone world, new information providers will emerge to create new models of business relationships in the telecommunications industry.
 "In October, Bell Atlantic announced plans to provide a video on demand service over its existing copper network; in November, we announced we would provide video dial tone service to Sammons Communications over a fiber optic system in Morris County, N.J. Today's announcement is further evidence that Bell Atlantic is completely committed to deploying technology to ensure that a broad range of voice, video and information services is provided to customers."
 Bell Atlantic is the parent company of New Jersey Bell, Bell of Pennsylvania, Diamond State Telephone (serving Delaware) and The Chesapeake and Potomac Telephone Companies Serving Maryland, Virginia, Washington, D.C., and West Virginia.
 In addition, Bell Atlantic is the parent of one of the nation's largest providers of mobile communications and of companies that provide business system solutions and financial services throughout the United States and around the world. Bell Atlantic International, in conjunction with Ameritech, owns a majority interest in Telecom Corporation of New Zealand.
 ----
 NOTE: Following is a sidebar on the New Jersey Bell-FutureVision agreement:
 NEW JERSEY BELL AND FUTUREVISION ANNOUNCE AGREEMENT
 DOVER TOWNSHIP, N.J., Dec. 15 -- New Jersey Bell, a Bell Atlantic Company, and FutureVision of America Corporation announced a 10-year agreement today that will enable FutureVision to deliver new options in video entertainment and information services to the 38,000 homes and businesses in Dover Township.
 FutureVision's competition initially will be the incumbent cable television (TV) operator in Dover Township.
 New Jersey Bell will modernize its network in Dover Township with fiber optic technology beginning next summer. The upgrade will require federal regulatory approval. New Jersey Bell will deliver traditional telephone service over its upgraded network. FutureVision, based in Downington, Pa., will purchase tariffed transport services from New Jersey Bell and will offer advanced video services that will expand customers' choice and convenience.
 New Jersey Bell's and FutureVision's announcement follows a Nov. 16 announcement of an agreement with Sammons Communications Inc. of Dallas, one of the nation's largest cable companies. On Nov. 16, New Jersey Bell said it plans to install a digital fiber network in three Morris County communities and deliver cable television signals for Sammons, the incumbent cable provider.
 Both of the fiber optic projects reflect New Jersey Bell's and Bell Atlantic's commitment to deploy state-of-the-art technology where market conditions, costs and regulatory incentives justify the investment.
 Bell Atlantic is working to develop agreements with both existing and emerging entertainment and information service providers. These include computer software and hardware companies, consumer electronics, cable TV companies and others. Some of the services under consideration include interactive video and home shopping services, health care providers and educators.
 "This project signals another important step in our quest to be the provider of choice for all kinds of information providers," said James G. Cullen, president and chief executive officer of New Jersey Bell. "New Jersey Bell intends to build an advanced, broadband network that eventually will link all communities and ultimately let each individual have control over the entertainment and information that enters their home.
 "In addition to offering telephone services of unsurpassed quality and reliability, this network will provide entertainment and information services providers, including cable television firms, with a versatile, easy to use and highly reliable way to reach their customers."
 Fiber will be placed to a curbside location near each customer's home. Voice, video and data signals then will travel into the home over a combination of copper telephone wires and coaxial cable.
 "We are convinced that New Jersey Bell's new digital, fiber optic network provides us with the platform to supply each home and business with a connection to unlimited entertainment and information sources," said Bob Schena, president of FutureVision. "We intend to give customers the opportunity to receive countless program choices, just as they are able to reach an infinite number of telephone users today."
 The project underscores New Jersey Bell's commitment to develop a statewide broadband telecommunications network by 2010, as part of an accelerated technology program called Opportunity New Jersey. Under this plan, every phone line in the state served by New Jersey Bell will be able to carry enhanced voice and two-way video and data. The plan is tied to approval of a proposed plan for alternative regulation currently under review by state regulators.
 The Dover Township fiber network will carry telephone and video programming services, as well as a host of interactive video and other information services. The addition of more advanced digital switches and data storage facilities, for instance, will enable customers to receive video on demand services -- that is, the ability to select and view a certain movie or program when they want to see it.
 Future enhancements to the network will provide two-way interactive video services, enabling customers to make video phone calls and participate in classes, lectures or town meetings from home. Additional transmission capacity will be made available to other information service providers, and negotiations with several such providers are under way.
 The project marks New Jersey Bell's second installation of equipment manufactured by BroadBand Technologies, Inc., of Research Triangle Park, N.C., to provide the largest installation of fiber-to- the-curb in the United States.
 -0- 12/15/92
 /NOTE: A diagram of Bell Atlantic information services network architecture is available./
 /CONTACT: Larry Plumb of Bell Atlantic, 703-974-2814, or Karen Johnson of New Jersey Bell, 201-649-2282/
 (BEL)


CO: Bell Atlantic Corporation; New Jersey Bell; FutureVision of
 America Corporation ST: New Jersey IN: TLS SU:


DC -- DC002 -- 7135 12/15/92 11:09 EST
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Copyright 1992 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Date:Dec 15, 1992
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