TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Bells Ringing in Net Phone 911

Bells Ringing in Net Phone 911

Jack Decker (jack-yahoogroups@withheld)
Mon, 07 Mar 2005 01:20:21 -0500

By Ben Charny
Staff Writer, CNET

A 17-year-old girl's call to 911 earlier this month after both her
parents were shot by intruders never got through to police.

Rather, the Houston teen got a recording from the Net phone company
her family recently began using telling her that 911 service wasn't
available. She managed to escape to summon authorities and an
ambulance from elsewhere -- with a phone that did provide 911

This nightmarish scenario is fresh evidence of continuing 911 problems
for Net phone providers, say executives gathering for this week's
Voice on the Net Spring 2005 trade show in San Jose, Calif. Net phone
providers sell voice over Internet Protocol, or VoIP, telephone
services that use the unregulated Internet rather than the more
expensive, heavily taxed and less efficient traditional phone
network. That network is dominated by the four local phone giants,
also called the Baby Bells, which provide 911 services. The majority
of U.S. Net phone providers still cannot successfully route a 911 call
to the right emergency calling center and also provide emergency
operators with the caller's phone number and location.

There has been recent progress, however. The Bells are closer than
ever to allowing Net phone operators direct access to their emergency
call infrastructure, which would ease a major hurdle in offering
better 911 VoIP service.

Full story at:

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