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Initiative targets phone congestion

Bellcore launches an initiative to get Internet traffic off the public phone system and back onto the so-called Information Superhighway.

Bellcore today launched an initiative to get Internet traffic off the public telephone system and back onto the so-called Information Superhighway.

Working with service providers and equipment suppliers, Bellcore is calling on the industry to help develop generic standards that would reroute data traffic. Right now, the Public Switched Telephone Network is overcrowded with calls from people connecting to data systems, such as those used to connect to the Internet through analog modems.

Those calls could be transferred to another system, but companies must first agree on a standard to do so. That's where the Bellcore initiative comes in.

"The development of generic requirements will provide specifications for open, common interfaces by which suppliers can help ensure that their Internet offload products and features such as switches, access servers and signaling gateways are compatible and meet industry requirements," according to a Bellcore statement today.

"A cost-effective Internet traffic offload solutions is a priority for the industry," stated Jack Zatz, the chairman of Bellcore's Network Performance Solutions and the Internet Traffic Engineering Solutions Forum.

"We must approach this problem together to develop products which adhere to common standards and fulfill all carrier requirements," he said. "A piecemeal approach by suppliers will likely result in products of limited use and interoperability problems."