RCN Goes General for VoIP Gateway

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General Bandwidth Inc. has landed its first North American cable deal: RCN Corp. is rolling out its G6 media gateway for its deployment of voice-over-Internet protocol in Chicago.

“With the addition of General Bandwidth’s carrier-class gateways to our state-of-the-art network in Chicago, we now control the entire customer experience for our VoIP customers, giving our customers greater choice and values in telecommunications services,” RCN senior vice president of marketing and product Rick Rioboli said in a statement.

Princeton, N.J.-based RCN said it serves 100,000 customers in Chicago, across 300,000 homes passed. The company reports 1,000 VoIP subscribers, and is adding 30 new customers a day.

RCN has deployed circuit-switched phone service and has a number of switches in the market. General Bandwidth director of business development Ken Cavanaugh said his company’s media gateway is located in front of RCN’s class-five switch, near the headend, which helps layer VoIP phone service into circuit-switched plant.

General Bandwidth is in trials with several other U.S. MSOs for its media-gateway product, Cavanaugh said. It is also involved with Alcatel in SBC Communications Inc.’s plans for fiber to the premises.

“For cable, the value we bring is public-switched telephony network [PSTN] quality,” he said.

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