BELL ATLANTIC MOBILE INTRODUCES CELLULAR INFORMATION SERVICE, 'MOBILE PBX EXTENSION'
BELL ATLANTIC MOBILE INTRODUCES CELLULAR INFORMATION SERVICE, 'MOBILE PBX EXTENSION' BEDMINSTER, N.J., March 30 /PRNewswire/ -- Bell Atlantic Mobile Systems today announced a pair of services designed to give its customers greater utility and value from their cellular phones. Bell Atlantic(R) QuickClips(SM) is a cellular voice-mail-based information service. The company also introduced Bell Atlantic Mobile Direct(SM) service, which enables Bell Atlantic's large multi-line customers to link their cellular phones with their office's voice and data networks. Bell Atlantic QuickClips Service Bell Atlantic Mobile has begun offering QuickClips, a voice-based information service giving cellular users a choice of updated reports from more than 80 different categories. Information for QuickClips is supplied by Dow Jones & Company Inc. through the Dow Jones Voice Information Network (/R/ Dow Jones & Company Inc.) The service allows cellular customers to access information updates automatically through their Bell Atlantic Mobile Messenger(SM) voice mail service. A customer may select up to 25 categories from more than 80 different options. Updated reports are then automatically delivered directly to the customer's voice mailbox. Information categories range from Dow Jones world news, sports, entertainment, and weather through financial news including updates on the stock market and news updates on 20 different industries. QuickClips service is being introduced today in the Pittsburgh area; the company hopes to extend it throughout its region. Benjamin L. Scott, Bell Atlantic Mobile Systems vice president- marketing and sales, said the company is delighted to play a major role in the emerging information services industry. "This is just the beginning of the types of information services we will be able to provide," Scott said. "QuickClips service meets the immediate need customers have for easy access to news, but we will continue to modify and enhance our information services with more sophisticated options." QuickClips customers must be Mobile Messenger subscribers in order to use the information service since updates are deposited in their Mobile Messenger voice mailboxes. When a cellular user checks his or her voice mailbox for routine messages, their will be notification if there are any new reports in the customer's pre-selected categories. The user can then easily retrieve the most up-to-date information. Customers pay a $2 monthly rate for QuickClips service, plus Mobile Messenger fees and regular usage charges for retrieval time. A typical message might range from 30 seconds to two minutes in length. The $2 monthly charge is being waived during April and May for new QuickClips subscribers. Dow Jones is publisher of The Wall Street Journal, Barron's, and other business publications, newswires and electronic information services, and the Ottaway group of community newspapers. Bell Atlantic Mobile Direct Service Mobile Direct service provides users with a virtual extension of their office telecommunications into the mobile environment, enabling their cellular phones to behave much like PBX or Centrex extensions. Benefits include potential savings on long-distance calls and easier, abbreviated dialing to and from cellular phones. While Bell Atlantic Mobile has directly interconnected its network to selected federal government accounts for more than two years, this is the first time it has offered a wider range of interconnection services to the general business market. Mobile Direct interconnection is available in Bell Atlantic Mobile's Washington/Baltimore, greater Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh markets. The service is geared towards customers who use a private virtual network service such as AT&T's Software Defined Network (SDN), Sprint's VPN (/SM/ Sprint), or MCI'S Vnet (/R/ MCI Communications Corp.), or those with a large local concentration of users, such as a corporate headquarters. Depending on a customer's particular requirements, Bell Atlantic Mobile can provide direct interconnection between its cellular switch and the customer's PBX, Centrex, or network provider. With Mobile Direct Service, customers' cellular numbers can have the same first three digits as their office phone system, allowing them to call or be called by others in their office using just their assigned four- or five-digit extension. Abbreviated dialing to the cellular phone will also work when a Mobile Direct subscriber roams from his home system and activates Follow Me Roaming (/R/ GTE Telecommunications Services), a service which allows customers to more easily use their cellular phones when traveling in cities served by Follow Me Roaming. Cost savings come in two area: First, when placing long-distance calls from a cellular phone, Mobile Direct users will receive the discounted "least cost routing" rates already negotiated by the customer with long-distance carriers for their office phones, rather than the higher retail rates offered to individual users. This could cut domestic long-distance rates by half, and international rates even more. Second, when Mobile Direct Service is connected to a PBX or Centrex, customers no longer pay a landline termination charge on completed outgoing cellular calls which don't cross LATA boundaries. Philadelphia-based SmithKline Beecham is Bell Atlantic Mobile's first commercial Mobile Direct customer. Sam Shiels, director of telecommunications and strategic information technology at SmithKline, said, "Clearly, Bell Atlantic is at the leading edge of an evolution which will merge wired and wireless networks. We share the vision that wireless is quickly becoming a mainstream telecommunications asset." SmithKline Beecham's Mobile Direct configuration directly connects their worldwide Sprint VPN with Bell Atlantic's cellular network. "When cellular was first introduced, end users in large organizations usually were responsible for buying their own cellular phones," said Bell Atlantic Mobile's Scott. "Now telecommunications managers are making cellular purchasing decisions for entire organizations. With Mobile Direct service, they can integrate cellular phones into the landline telecommunications network, making them as simple to use as their desk phones and realizing savings on many levels." To broaden the utility and extend the economic advantages of private virtual network access, Bell Atlantic Mobile Systems can, at a customer's request, presubscribe SDN network customers' cellular phones to AT&T's SDN service. This permits those phones to appear as an on- network location. Bell Atlantic Mobile is also inviting other long- distance carriers to work with it to provide a similar capability. Bell Atlantic Mobile Systems provides cellular service and equipment in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia and Washington. It is a subsidiary of Philadelphia-based Bell Atlantic Corporation (NYSE: BEL), which in September 1991 announced an agreement to acquire the cellular telephone and certain other operations of Metro Mobile CTS, Inc. operating in Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, North and South Carolina, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas. Bell Atlantic is a registered trademark and QuickClips, Mobile Messenger, and Mobile Direct are service marks of Bell Atlantic Corp. -0- 3/30/92 /CONTACT: Karen Ann Kurlander, 908-306-7552, or Brian Wood, 908-306-7508, both of Bell Atlantic Mobile Systems/ (BEL) CO: Bell Atlantic Mobile Systems ST: New Jersey IN: TLS SU: PDT
CK-TS -- NY057 -- 2916 03/30/92 12:58 EST
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|Date:||Mar 30, 1992|
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