The much-anticipated freedom, convenience and security of advanced personal communications services (PCS) are one step closer to reality today for more than 60 million potential customers in the Midwest and Southeast U.S.
That's because the Sprint Telecommunications Venture, the biggest winner in last year's Federal Communications Commission (FCC) auction of new radio spectrum for PCS, has awarded Northern Telecom (Nortel) a multi-year contract—estimated to be worth $US 1 billion—to supply PCS network equipment and services based on Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA)technology. Financing arrangements, an important element of the supply contract, continue to be negotiated.
Nortel will build CDMA PCS networks for the venture in 17 Major Trading Areas (MTAs), including Dallas/Fort Worth, Miami, New Orleans, St. Louis, San Antonio, Kansas City, Tulsa, Oklahoma City, Wichita, Little Rock, Louisville, Nashville, Birmingham, Indianapolis, Omaha, Des Moines and Minneapolis/St. Paul. These networks will provide service for 40 percent of the venture's potential customers.
"We've analyzed the available technologies thoroughly and concluded that Nortel's CDMA product and service architecture is one of the strongest available," said Ronald T. LeMay, chief executive officer, Sprint Telecommunications Venture. "Nortel has the open interfaces, the extensive networking experience, and the comprehensive portfolio of solutions we need to make it happen."
Digital personal communications services are expected to stimulate continued, rapid growth in demand for mobile voice, data, facsimile and messaging by offering these and other new services to business and residential users at lower cost, higher quality and with greater security and privacy than today's predominantly analog cellular telephone service.
"The Sprint Telecommunications Venture chose Nortel as a supplier with the breadth of technology, services, and resources required to meet its aggressive rollout needs," said Dave Twyver, president, Wireless Networks,Nortel. "We believe that Nortel's CDMA product and services architecture is the best in the industry—it's the result of a collaborative effort between Qualcomm, the inventor of CDMA, and Nortel, one of the leading suppliers of PCS networks."
Nortel has a unique strategic relationship with Qualcomm to jointly design, develop, and manufacture complete CDMA networks for mobile applications and wireless local loop applications around the world.
"This agreement with the Sprint Telecommunications Venture complements our established success with other PCS operators and technologies," Twyver said. "We were delighted to help build the very successful Sprint Spectrum PCS network in Washington-Baltimore, and look forward to an equally successful deployment in these 17 additional service areas."
Sprint Spectrum—the first commercially available broadband personal communications service anywhere in the U.S.—was deployed successfully inthe Washington-Baltimore market through American Personal Communications (APC), an affiliate of the Sprint Telecommunications Venture.
The Sprint Telecommunications Venture is a partnership of Sprint, Tele-Communications Inc., Comcast Corporation and Cox Communications which is building a national wireless communications services network.
Nortel partners with customers worldwide to design, build, and integrate A World of Networks--for information, entertainment, education, and business--offering the broadest choice of digital network products. Nortel has installed more digital lines worldwide than any other company.
Nortel had 1995 revenues of $US 10.7 billion and has approximately 60,000 employees worldwide.
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