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It’s time to embrace the future of phone networks – and the death of telephone numbers

Published Jan 31st, 2014 6:15PM EST
FCC Telephone Network Upgrade
Image: Flickr

If you’ve been on pins and needles waiting for HD voice calls to become the norm, the wait is apparently almost over. The Washington Post reports that the FCC voted to begin rolling out a trial program for fiber-optic telephone networks later this year. According to the report, phone carriers will set up the trials in designated test areas all over the U.S. as the FCC prepares for a full-scale transition to Internet Protocol networks in the future. Interestingly, that may also eventually lead to the death of traditional phone numbers.

With the trials, carriers will be able to test how emergency services will be affected by the transition, as well as how to assign new kinds of phone numbers and whether or not the IP networks could “help deliver high-speed broadband to rural America.”

“Sandbox thinking is very popular among start-ups in Silicon Valley, but why not put it to use in Washington?” said FCC commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel. “Testing big ideas in a small way is a good way to understand the consequences of our policy choices and the impact on consumers before unleashing them on the world at large.”

Jacob Siegal
Jacob Siegal Associate Editor

Jacob Siegal is Associate Editor at BGR, having joined the news team in 2013. He has over a decade of professional writing and editing experience, and helps to lead our technology and entertainment product launch and movie release coverage.


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