Telecomms hardware and service providers are trying to make it easier to converge all kinds of traffic onto the local-loop portion of public data networks.
Seven companies recently formed the ATM Local Telephone Alliance (ALTA) to promote interoperability among ATM-based carrier gear so it supports full-featured voice, video and data services.
While ATM standards ensure general interoperability, some phone features are not covered, according to Mike Viren, chairman of 2nd Century Communications, a founding member of ALTA.
ALTA members hope that by banding together, they can make leading suppliers such as Lucent and Nortel Networks better hear their voices.
Other founding ALTA members are Advanced Switching Communications, Convergent Networks, Mariposa Technologies, Unisphere Solutions, Vina Technologies and Woodwind Communications.