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News Briefs

After months of speculation, it looks like the Sprint Nextel Corp.-cableco joint venture is about to bear fruit. The wireless operator told USA Today that Time Warner Cable and Comcast Communications will go live with cell service in a handful of markets by the end of 2006, with full deployments scheduled for the months following. Cox Communications Inc., Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Advance/Newhouse Communications have all been in trials with blended quad-play services since a partnership announcement with Sprint in November 2005.

SIP trunking provider BandTel LLC in late November unveiled a new VAR program that allows partners to choose either 15 percent monhtly commission on customers total usage or 10 percent residual on usage plus a cash bonus equal to the customers third month billing. Agents have access to the www.sipeducation.com site and the TotalView Web-based portal, which tracks customers call usage and payment history as well as commission and revenue-management tools.

Following the quick close of Time Warner Telecoms acquisition of Xspedius Communications LLC, the company is working to integrate the channel. Though few details were available at press time, Time Warner Telecom executives say they are looking for best practices across both programs and in so doing assuage fears expressed by some Xspedius agents about the structure of the new program.

Metropolitan Telecommunications Inc. (MetTel) has extended its wholesale agreement with Verizon Communications Inc. The companies originally signed a deal in December 2004; that contract replaced MetTels UNE-P arrangement with Verizon. MetTel serves customers in the same 28 states as Verizon. Nationally, the company owns more than 185,000 lines in 48 states.

TalkSwitch has upgraded its SMB Reseller Portal, with the addition of a Reseller Zone containing special offers and incentives, customizable marketing tools, case studies, selling tips, technical webinars and details about the TalkSwitch channel program.

TelePacific Communications said it will buy Arrival Communications, gaining 64,000 access line equivalents in California, and giving wholesale customers use of Arrivals network and colocation facilities. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The transaction should be finalized in the first quarter of 2007.

TelePacific earlier this year bought Mpower Communications, giving the California carrier entrance into Chicago and parts of Nevada. Its acquisition of Pac-West has allowed it to open a call center in Stockton, Calif., and sales offices in Stockton, Calif., and Fresno, Calif., and hire an additional sales team in Bakersfield, Calif.

U.K.-based Synchronica is expanding its reseller channel program to the United States, offering incentives for selling its Synchronica SyncML Gateway and Mobile Manager products, the company said, although it would not comment on compensation details. The U.S. channel manager is Sascha Beyer, the companys chief sales officer. Synchronica has 20 reseller partners in Europe, Africa and Australia. Its U.S. offices are in Reston, Va., Seattle and Santa Clara, Calif.

One Communications has tapped OSG Billing Services to provide a common platform for invoice presentment and distribution across the company, which was formed from the merger of three CLECs. The combined entity serves more than 160,000 businesses in 16 states. OSG Billing completed the transition in less than 30 days.

Pivot VoIP, a division of Israel-based PBX maker Telrad Connegy, has purchased the assets of Zultys Technologies, the beleagured IP PBX maker that filed bankruptcy earlier this year. The $2.65 million buy includes all key intellectual property, online and offline brands, all of its products. Pivot also assumed Zultys debt. Pivot VoIP will go by the Zultys name in an effort to ensure business continuity with resellers and others. Founder Ian Milnes will leave the organization. Telrad Connegys owner and chairman, Avi Weinrib, will take over as president and CEO.

Links
Sprint Nextel Corp. www.sprint.com
Sprint Business Solutions Partners www.sprint.com/varvips

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