It's spring (or rather, fall) cleaning at AT&T
The death of expensive long-distance calling is why AT&T made the decision to exit the residential market earlier this year. The company has refocused on its most lucrative market -- business customers -- to generate cash for debt reduction. A write-down was inevitable as the value of AT&T's long-distance network is significantly lower without residential customers.
Think about it for a moment. The telecommunications market is finally "converging" with other mediums, as predicted. Cell phones, broadband Internet, and wireless connectivity have all made land-based phone lines a relic of the past. Long-distance calling isn't an expensive proposition anymore, and at least in the U.S., it's usually indistinguishable from a local call.
Communication convergence is happening right before our eyes, and there's no longer a need for multiple communication providers. Consumers can get a full suite of local and long-distance calling services, Internet, and even television all from one company. The competitive landscape has changed, and either now or very soon, cable companies such as Comcast
Wireless and voice over IP (VoIP) are the technologies of the future. Sprint
The old Ma Bell has two valuable assets: its VoIP service and a huge base of business customers that a company such as Comcast or Time Warner's
Time Warner and SBC are both Motley Fool Stock Advisor recommendations. Subscribe today with a money-back guarantee.