Thursday, November 25, 2004

Powell Warns SBC on VoIP Termination Charges

FCC Chairman Michael K. Powell issued a public statement warning SBC Communications against imposing traditional tariff access charges on VoIP providers or to discriminate against its VoIP competitors. The statement was issued in response to SBC's new interstate connectivity service, known as TIPToP.

TIPToP is a new SBC service that gives VOIP providers the capability to connect traffic to PSTN based voice services. Specifically, TIPToP provides switch port interfaces, which enable trunk groups, transport, SS7 Initial Setup (ISUP), and SS7 Transaction Capabilities Access Part (TCAP) queries for Local Number Portability (LNP) and Customer Name and Address (CNAM). The TIPToP port interface is a TDM trunk side switched circuit interface using SS7 signaling. The TIPToP port interface physically connects the SBC Access Tandem to the TIPToP customer's point of presence in the LATA which connects to the TIPToP customer's IP Gateway Device.

In a public statement, Powell wrote "SBC's tariff makes clear that TIPToP is not a mandatory offering and VoIP providers may continue to utilize alternatives to exchange their traffic. Should we conclude that this tariff is being used to justify the imposition of traditional tariffed access charges on VoIP providers or to discriminate against SBC's competitors, the Commission will take appropriate action including, but not limited to, initiating an investigation of SBC's interstate tariff and any other tariff that proposes similar terms. Nothing in this tariff should be interpreted to force a set of compensation relationships on VoIP providers and their connecting carriers either at this Commission or in other venues."http://www.fcc.gov


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