BT, Belgacom and Verizon First to Make the Move
Brussels, Belgium April 21, 2010 — Voxbone today announced that incumbent telecommunications carriers have begun routing calls to its geographically-independent iNum ® numbers – previously used solely by VoIP providers.
iNum numbers use ‘an area code for Earth’ (+883) that is location agnostic. They offer customers of participating service providers a globally portable number for life. Voxbone believes carrier adoption is key to widespread iNum usage and points to the future primacy of IP communications.
The first of the incumbents to agree to route iNums are British Telecom, Belgacom and Verizon. All these carriers currently have VoIP service offerings in place; calls to iNum numbers can be made by both IP and PSTN customers.
Upon receiving calls to iNum numbers, Voxbone sends them over its global IP network to the appropriate service provider for termination. In this way, it connects incoming calls from PSTN callers, as well as calls between different VoIP and IM providers.
“Gaining recognition of iNum from traditional, non-VoIP carriers is critical to iNum’s long-term success and, more broadly, is a major industry milestone, signaling a pivotal change in the thinking of the world’s national carriers,” said Rod Ullens, CEO of Voxbone. “With short- or long-term IP conversion plans of their own, most incumbent operators are no longer fighting but rather embracing internet-based communication services.”
Ullens said he expects additional incumbents to follow.
Some iNum-participating carriers provide iNum numbers to their customers so they can receive calls on them. Other carriers, including BT, Belgacom and Verizon, are thus far only routing calls to the new numbers.
Simply routing iNum numbers brings several benefits to service providers. First, enabling subscribers to dial contacts who are on their preferred IM client or IP phone adds a valuable subscriber service. Secondly, this new connectivity generates new revenue-generating minutes. Finally, as carriers’ IP build-outs progress, iNum numbers will help them create more all-IP call paths, enabling high-definition voice, video, presence, and other advanced features to augment and extend simple voice calls.
Voxbone offers iNum numbers for free to service providers. A list of all participating carriers and their rates for iNum connection appears on the http://www.inum.net site.