published weekly by Angus TeleManagement Group
Number 520: March 10, 2006
Publication of Telecom Update is made possible by generous
financial support from:
** AVAYA: www.avaya.ca/
** BELL CANADA: www.bell.ca
** CISCO SYSTEMS CANADA: www.cisco.com/ca/
** ERICSSON: www.ericsson.ca
** MICROSOFT CANADA: www.microsoft.com/canada/telecom/
** MITEL NETWORKS: www.mitel.com/
** NEC UNIFIED SOLUTIONS: www.necunifiedsolutions.com
** ROGERS TELECOM: www.rogers.com/solutions
** VONAGE CANADA: www.vonage.ca
IN THIS ISSUE:
** Bell and Aliant Create New 3.4-Million-Line Telco
** Toronto Hydro Plans Downtown-Wide Wi-Fi
** TWU Executive Fights Ouster in Court
** Cisco Offers Multimedia Platform
** Avaya, Cisco Embrace Microsoft LCS
** AT&T Inc to Buy BellSouth
** Third-World Phone Service Expands
** Vonage and Shaw Debate 'VoIP Tax'
** Bell Must Provide Equal Access on Digital Voice Lite
** Once Again, Nortel Delays Results
** Bell and Telus Launch EV-DO in Quebec City
** NEC Hosts Network Management
** Mitel Partners for Power over Ethernet
** Ceasefire at Minacs Worldwide
** Telesat Posts Record Earnings
** Canadian Telecom Conferences in 2006
BELL AND ALIANT CREATE NEW 3.4-MILLION-LINE TELCO: On Tuesday BCE
announced plans to create a new income trust that will own Aliant's
wireline operations, Bell's recently announced "regional lines"
spin-off (see Telecom Update #515), and Bell's 63.4% share of Bell
** The new company, which may be created as early as July, will have
3.4 million local lines and 400,000 high-speed Internet customers,
spread over six provinces. Its headquarters will be in Atlantic
Canada. It will continue to use the existing Aliant and Bell brand
names for most services.
** Initially BCE will own 73.5% of the new company, but will reduce
that to 45% by distributing units to its shareholders. It will have
the right to nominate a majority of the company's directors and to
control the appointment of its CEO.
** Bell will acquire Aliant Mobility and Aliant's DownEast
Communications phone stores.
TORONTO HYDRO PLANS DOWNTOWN-WIDE WI-FI: Toronto Hydro plans to create
the largest Wi-Fi zone in Canada, installing access points on light
standards throughout an area of six square kilometres bounded
east-west by Jarvis and Spadina and north-south by Front and
Bloor. The utility's telecom subsidiary says it will begin offering
service in about half of that area by June 30, and in all of it by
** Service will be free for the first six months, and then offered in
"a variety of access packages at competitive rates."
TWU EXECUTIVE FIGHTS OUSTER IN COURT: On Monday, the
Telecommunications Workers Union convention, meeting in Burnaby B.C.,
voted non-confidence in the union's leadership. The entire executive
was replaced by a new group headed by Kamloops installer George
Doubt. On Thursday, 67 of the 118 delegates were served with notice
that ousted president Bruce Bell had applied for a court injunction to
block the new executive from taking office.
** The non-confidence vote appears to reflect discontent with the
process that led to approval of a new contract with Telus in
November. (see Telecom Update #504, 505, 507)
CISCO OFFERS MULTIMEDIA PLATFORM: Under the slogan "This Changes
Everything," Cisco Systems has launched Cisco Unified Communications,
a suite of integrated voice, data, and video applications. The new
offering includes Unified CallManager 5.0, a Linux-based platform that
supports Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) and that will ultimately
converge with the existing Windows-based version of CallManager.
AVAYA, CISCO EMBRACE MICROSOFT LCS: Avaya and Cisco have both
announced plans to integrate support for Microsoft's Office
Communicator and Live Communications Server into their IP-PBX
offerings. Nortel and Mitel have recently made similar announcements
(see Telecom Update #517, 519).
AT&T INC TO BUY BELLSOUTH: AT&T Inc., created when SBC bought AT&T
Corp. last year (see Telecom Update #506), has agreed to buy
BellSouth in a stock swap valued at US$67 billion. In 1984, the old
AT&T was broken into eight companies -- seven regional phone companies
and AT&T. Only three of the eight exist as independent companies
THIRD-WORLD PHONE SERVICE EXPANDS: In 1980, developing countries accounted
for only 20% of the world's telephone lines. In 2005 the figure was 60%,
with much of the growth driven by wireless. Even in sub-Saharan Africa,
where phone penetration is still low, the rate tripled in the last five
years, to 104 subscribers per 1,000 people.
** Detailed statistics on telecom and IT growth in 144 countries
appear in a World Bank report issued this week. Information and
Communications for 2006: Global Trends and Policies can be
purchased online at http://WorldBankReport.notlong.com
VONAGE AND SHAW DEBATE 'VOIP TAX': In an exchange of press releases
this week, Vonage and Shaw debated whether a "quality of service"
enhancement that Shaw offers at $10/month to Vonage customers using
Shaw's Internet service is really a thinly disguised "VoIP tax."
** Vonage first made the claim last December, in a submission to the
CRTC in support of a related application by Cybersurf (see Telecom
Update #509), saying Shaw's QoS fee has a "chilling effect" on
customers considering a competitive VoIP service.
** Shaw says that Vonage's accusation is "both wrong and misleading."
It told the CRTC that its QoS service is an optional enhancement,
offered as a value added service to its retail Internet customers.
BELL MUST PROVIDE EQUAL ACCESS ON DIGITAL VOICE LITE: CRTC Telecom
Decision 2006-11 gives final approval to Bell Canada's "Digital Voice
Lite" access-independent VoIP service tariffs, with conditions. (See
Telecom Update #496)
** Within a year Bell must implement equal access, allowing
DVLite customers to choose their long distance providers.
Bell must also comply with the CRTC's earlier order to
implement full local number portability on DVLite by June
2006 (see Telecom Update #508).
** Bell must file new tariff pages when DVLite prices change,
but the maximum and minimum points of the price range
approved by the Commission can remain confidential.
** Bell must inform customers of service limitations and
obtain their express acknowledgement before starting
ONCE AGAIN, NORTEL DELAYS RESULTS: Nortel Networks is postponing the
filing of its annual report for 2005 in order to restate about US$850
million in revenues that were recognized in the wrong quarters. The
adjustments, which affect 2003, 2004, 2005, and some earlier periods,
do not alter Nortel's cash reserves.
** Nortel's fourth-quarter revenue, subject to adjustment, was US$2.95
billion, an increase of 13% on the quarter and 14% on the year. A
$2.47 billion litigation expense resulted in a net loss of $2.21
billion (see Telecom Update #516). Gross margin was 43% of revenue.
** CEO Mike Zafirovski expressed dissatisfaction with
Nortel's results which "have not been good ... since 1998."
BELL AND TELUS LAUNCH EV-DO IN QUEBEC CITY: Bell and Telus both
introduced EV-DO high-speed cellular data service in Quebec City's
downtown core this week. The two companies share wireless network
facilities across Canada.
** Manitoba Telecom Services says it will launch EV-DO in
Winnipeg and Brandon this spring.
NEC HOSTS NETWORK MANAGEMENT: NEC Unified Solutions now offers two new
network management offerings for small to medium businesses: Remote
Management, which monitors data and VoIP network infrastructure, and
Threat Management, which reports on network security.
MITEL PARTNERS FOR POWER OVER ETHERNET: Mitel and Foundry Networks
have completed interoperability testing to supply power from Foundry
switches to Mitel phones over gigabit Ethernet networks.
CEASEFIRE AT MINACS WORLDWIDE: Minacs Worldwide says that Elaine
Minacs, who owns 46.5% of the company's stock, has agreed not sell her
shares or call a special shareholder's meeting, and to tender her
shares to any Board-approved transaction that pays at least
$5/share. Elaine Minacs had previously called for a special
shareholders meeting to replace the existing board. (See Telecom
TELESAT POSTS RECORD EARNINGS: Telesat Canada, a BCE subsidiary,
reports revenue in 2005 of $475 million, 31% higher than the previous
year, and cash flow of $204 million, a 10% increase. Net earnings rose
6.6% to $89 million.
CANADIAN TELECOM CONFERENCES IN 2006: Mark your calendar -- it's a
busy year for telecom conferences. Some highlights:
** Voice on the Net Canada 2006. April 3-5, Metro Toronto
Convention Centre. http://www.voncanada.com/
** Canadian Telecommunications Consultants Association Spring
2006 Conference. April 6-8, Radisson Plaza Admiral,
** 2006 Canadian Telecom Summit. June 12-14, Toronto Congress
** Telemanagement Live! October 24-25, Metro Toronto
Convention Centre. http://www.telemanagementlive.com/
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