Two Communications Leaders Unite to Revolutionize E9-1-1with the First Territory-Wide Deployment of NENA`s Proposed I2 Technical Standard
Edison, NJ, May 3, 2005 - Vonage Holdings Corp, the leading provider of broadband phone service, today announced an agreement with Verizon to access elements of the wireless and wireline Enhanced 9 -1 -1 network to offer its customers E9 -1 -1 service. As a result of a successful collaboration between the two companies, Vonage will able to deliver both caller's location and call back number to emergency services personnel for 911 calls placed throughout Verizon's territory. Verizon is the first ILEC to work closely with any nomadic VoIP service to ensure emergency calling keeps pace with VoIP technology.
"Verizon is a responsible steward of the E9 -1 -1 public trust, through their foresight Vonage is able to implement an E9 -1 -1 solution that will serve all customers," said Jeffrey A. Citron, Vonage's CEO. "Unlike other ILECs, Verizon has not recommended Vonage use a CLEC for call delivery, as they recognize the significant limitations of this solution, as it does not accommodate for mobile customers or VoIP users on non -local phone numbers. It is important that all Vonage customers can use this solution, those with native phone numbers and those who chose phone numbers from other areas."
How It Works
When Vonage customers dial 9 -1 -1, the call is routed to Vonage's 9 -1 -1 server using industry standard SIP protocol. The Vonage server then queries Intrado for routing instructions. The call is then directed to the media gateway connection to the Verizon network, over a dedicated physical circuit connected directly to Verizon's selective router that serves the Public Safety Answering Point ("PSAP"). Simultaneously, Intrado places the customer's address and telephone number into the Automatic Location Information (ALI) database. The supplementary special key unique to the call is included in signaling, and allows the PSAP 9 -1 -1 operator to pull the customer's address and phone number from the ALI database. Vonage, Verizon and Intrado intend to implement this first -of -its -kind E9 -1 -1 solution throughout Verizon territory within 6 months. To implement this novel solution, Verizon will perform all necessary modifications and translations to the network elements in each PSAP service area that bundle the ALI and selective routing infrastructure. The proposed solution is compliant with NENA's proposed I2 technical standard.
Verizon's Unprecedented Commitment to Public Safety
Vonage would like to personally thank Michael O'Connor, Stuart Elby, Link Hoewing, Maureen A. Napolitano and Mark Eveland for their diligent work to make VoIP E9 -1 -1 a reality throughout Verizon's footprint. Verizon's wholesale group has committed to offer Vonage the following elements on a commercial basis for the deployment of NENA -compatible Enhanced 9 -1 -1 within Verizon's 28 -state territory:
§ Direct trunking to the more than 100 Verzon -owned selective routers
§ Provision of wireless components enabling non -local numbers to call 911 - ESRNs (pANIs) and ESQKs (pALIs)
§ ALI -steering agreement for Intrado, Vonage's technology partner
As Mr. O'Connor acknowledged in Verizon's announcement last week, "With the recent and rapid growth of VoIP service, we needed to find a way to integrate VoIP providers into the E 911 system in a manner that would reliably serve VoIP end -users and that at the same time would not compromise the safety and reliability of the E 911 system for other users," he said. "After discussions with VoIP providers and the emergency services community, [Verizon] believes that we have identified an arrangement that meets the needs of both groups and enables VoIP providers to offer their customers significantly better 911 services than they receive today.
"The work and cooperation between Verizon and Vonage is a true achievement for the industry, and we thank Verizon for making it all possible. Providing the means in which broadband phone companies like Vonage can offer E9 -1 -1 is a major accomplishment and we commend Mr. Seidenberg for his effort and influence by giving this project a high priority within the Verizon organization. Now Vonage can offer a true E9 -1 -1 solution on par with traditional telephone service, to all of its customers, regardless of the phone number they've chosen to use. Verizon has shown great leadership by working with new technologies to ensure that Internet -based communications services can interoperate with Public Safety Answering Points," stated Jeffrey A. Citron, chairman and CEO of Vonage Holdings Corp.
NENA, the National Emergency Number Association, has also played a critical role in the development of technology solutions that will enable Vonage and Verizon to work together. Without NENA's technical committees, vetting process and framework, an industry solution for VoIP E9 -1 -1 would not be available today. Vonage thanks NENA for its diligent effort in developing practical solutions for VoIP E9 -1 -1 deployment.
"Vonage, in partnership with Verizon, will be the first provider to offer a comprehensive emergency calling service for nomadic and native VoIP calls. This agreement takes E9 -1 -1 services to the next level, providing location data and call -back just like on a traditional call," added Mr. Citron.
The fastest growing telephony company in North America, Vonage is redefining communications by offering consumers and small businesses an affordable alternative to traditional telephone service. Vonage has pioneered the broadband phone industry setting the standard for pricing, features, call quality and reliability for the entire VoIP category. With more than 600,000 lines in service, Vonage continues to add more than 15,000 lines per week to its network. Over 25 million calls per week are made using Vonage, the easy -to -use, feature -rich, flat rate phone service. Vonage's award winning service is sold on the web and through national retailers like SAM's Club, RadioShack, Best Buy, Circuit City, Staples, Fry's Electronics, Office Depot and CompUSA. Vonage Holdings Corporation is headquartered in Edison, New Jersey. For more information about Vonage's products and services, please visit www.vonage.com or call 1 -VONAGE -HELP. Vonage® is a trademark of Vonage Holdings Corp.