News Briefs

VoIP provider deltathree Inc. has joined Level 3 Communications Inc.s Master Reseller program. The deal makes Level 3 the wholesale network carrier for the deltathree Outsourced Platform, while deltathree, as a member of the Level(3)Enabled Master Reseller program, will target Tier 2 and 3 cable operators, telephony providers, ISPs and other broadband providers as prospective channel partners. deltathree also will use Level 3s (3)VoIP Enhanced Local Service in its back office.

MVNO Ready Mobile LLC is offering Q Comm International Inc.s retailers the Ready Mobile and Mojo Mobile Phone-in-box kits and airtime. Q Comm provides prepaid transaction processing and electronic point-of-sale distribution services. The new wireless products will be offered to Q Comms retail network of more than 3,800 merchants; merchants can co-brand products for chains of 100 or more stores.


Microsoft Corp. and MCI Inc. are in cahoots on a PC-to-PSTN service akin to Skype Technologies S.A.s SkypeOut that seeks to tap into the buying power of some 185 million MSN Messenger users worldwide.

Called MCI Web Calling for Windows Live Call, the service enables subscribers to simply click on an entry within their contact list in Windows Live Messenger (the successor to MSN Messenger) or type a phone number into the Windows Live Call softphone.

The companies are testing the service as part of a limited beta wherein subscribers receive up to one hour of free calls and can place calls to and from more than 220 countries with rates starting at 2.3 cents per minute to certain destinations. Customers will purchase prepaid calling time from MCI in $5, $10 or $25 blocks for use with the service. Final pricing will be released when the product launches this year.

While most analysts have criticized the services outboundonly restrictions, Paul Allen, founder of Infobase Ventures, draws attention in his blog to another potential hang-up with the launch:

I sure like the name Skype more than MCI Web Calling for Windows Live Call. Of course they could always use the acronym: MWCFWLC. Yeah, thats much better.

Infobase Ventures
Level 3 Communications Inc.
MCI Inc.
Microsoft Corp.
Q Comm International Inc.
Ready Mobile LLC

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