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5/25/2010
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Verizon VoIP Usage Soars

Customer's use of minutes supplied by Verizon’s Global Wireless VoIP increased more than 200% last year.

Verizon’s Global Wireless VoIP unit reported Tuesday that the number of minutes it supplied to customers grew more than 200% in 2009 compared with the previous year.

VoIP was once frowned upon by Verizon Communications and by other major carriers, but in recent years they have come to tolerate and even embrace Voice-over Internet Protocol technology. Verizon Wireless has even forged a close relationship with Skype, the independent VoIP pacesetter. Verizon Wireless is 55% owned by Verizon Communications.

"Since we launched our VoIP portfolio 10 years ago, we’ve seen steady growth reflecting customer desire for reliable, cost-effective IP voice services," said Mike Millegan, president of Verizon Global Wholesale, in a statement. “And, as this market grows, we continue to add new VoIP services while enhancing our existing portfolio.” The Verizon operation serves worldwide customers with call processing using packet-based signaling.

Verizon noted that it constantly adds new applications like short-duration calling systems for call centers and mass notification systems. The company said it plans to add more robust VoIP network interfaces in Europe this year.

In addition, by the end of the year, the Verizon unit expects to offer a VoIP-based feature that will enable its users to dispense with paper invoices and instead receive electronic invoices with call details included on them.

Millegan attributed much of Verizon’s progress with VoIP to its cooperation with industry standards and committees, both in the U.S. and overseas. "Verizon’s work with standards bodies is important behind-the-scenes work," Millegan said. "Without standards agreement, acceptance of new technologies and features is slowed."

The firm said it has a base of more than 700 wholesale VoIP customers.

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