Southwestern Bell Now Selling Cellular Long-distance Service
New Telecom Reform Bill Opening New Era of Choice for Consumers
Southwestern Bell Taking Another Step Toward One-Stop Shopping Telecommunications Provider
San Antonio, Texas, February 13, 1996
The ink has barely dried on the historic telecommunications reform law, and already Southwestern Bell Mobile Systems has signed up thousands of subscribers to its new long-distance cellular service.
Immediately after President Clinton signed the bill, Southwestern Bell Mobile Systems staff and authorized agents were manning the phones and sales counters, explaining to existing and new customers their newest choice for cellular long-distance service: Southwestern Bell.
Those efforts are continuing today as the company takes another step toward becoming the best one-stop provider of telecommunications services including local, longdistance and wireless phone services; home entertainment; equipment; and access to the Internet and other on-line services.
"Now that the law permits it, we know that we can provide the full range of cellular services better than anyone else," said Cliff Eason, President and CEO of Southwestern Bell Communications. "We've consistently proven that an unrelenting commitment to meeting customer needs is the key to growth and success in the telecommunications industry."
Southwestern Bell Mobile Systems is already the area's leading wireless company, and many industry analysts consider it, as well as the company's other wireless properties which operate in key markets nationwide, the country's best-managed wireless provider.
Consolidated cellular billing, long-distance flat rate
Effective immediately, Southwestern Bell Mobile Systems is offering its customers long-distance cellular service at a low flat rate of 20 cents per minute, regardless of the time of day, for all calls placed from within the home service area to any destination in the continental United States. Normal airtime charges apply. Southwestern Bell Mobile Systems customers also can enjoy the convenience of receiving one monthly bill for both local and long-distance cellular service from one company.
Prior to the passage of the telecommunications law, customers who subscribed to cellular services from a Regional Bell Operating Co. were required by law to select a separate long-distance carrier when they signed up for local cellular service, and were billed for the services separately.
Southwestern Bell research shows that many consumers are confused and frustrated by the complexity of long-distance calling plans. "Our new flat rate for long-distance cellular service directly addresses customers' needs by providing them with an easy-to-understand plan and a better way to predict their monthly expenses," said Eason.
Customers can sign up for long-distance service at no cost at their local Southwestern Bell Mobile Systems sales office or authorized agent location.
Other services to be offered soon
Cellular long-distance service is only one of many services that Southwestern Bell plans to offer in the future. For example, it expects to provide traditional "land-line" long-distance calling plans as soon as possible and in accordance with provisions in the new law.
# # #
Southwestern Bell Mobile Systems offers cellular, paging and cellular long-distance services in the key markets throughout Texas, Missouri, Kansas and Oklahoma. Southwestern Bell Mobile Systems and its out-region properties together serve 3.7 million cellular customers in 63 service areas nationwide. The companies comprise the second largest wireless company in the U.S., with market penetration of 9 percent, which is almost twice the industry average.
Southwestern Bell Mobile Systems is an affiliate of SBC Communications Inc., one of the world's leading diversified telecommunications companies. SBC's businesses include Southwestern Bell Telephone Co.; wireless services and equipment in the United States, Europe, Latin America, South Africa and Asia; business and consumer telecommunications equipment; messaging services; cable TV services in domestic and international markets; and directory advertising and publishing. SBC (NYSE:SBC) reported 1995 revenues of $12.7 billion.