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US telcos to trial digital voice services

Regulators in the US have today agreed for telcos in the country to carry out digital voice trials over fibre-optic and wireless routes.

As opposed to running over telcos existing copper cables, telcos, including AT&T and Verizon, will be allowed to test digital voice services over their fibre-optic lines.

The trials have been approved by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and if successful, could look to replace old telephone technology which is expensive both to run and repair.

Tom Wheeler, chairman of the FCC, said: “We invite service providers to propose voluntary experiments in the deployment of IP-connected networks.”

The FCC expects the trials to determine the effects of switching to digital technology on consumers and SMEs in particular.

In a statement, the FCC described the potential transition as “a good thing”, but added that it understands the importance of public information security, competition and consumer protection.

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