Southwestern Bell Unveils New Technology That Integrates Wireless And Landline Phones, Numbers

New technology offers customers simplicity of one phone - one number for all calls; A first for St. Louis area

St. Louis, Missouri, September 12, 1996

Residential and business customers in Eastern Missouri now can have just one phone and one number for all their home or office and cellular calls, thanks to a new technology being introduced today by Southwestern Bell.

FreedomPlus from Southwestern Bell enables customers to use the same phone and same number -- the wireless number -- to place or receive calls anywhere, anytime.

FreedomPlus is really two phones in one. It serves as a super cordless, landline telephone at home or work, and a cellular phone everywhere else. With FreedomPlus, when the phone is used within one-tenth of a mile of the customer's home or office, the call travels via the local wireline network -- the same as any other landline call.

But, when the customer travels beyond the one-tenth of a mile range, the call is routed over the wireless network just like a cellular call. The usage rates are the same as existing network or cellular rates.

"Southwestern Bell is proud to be the first telecommunications company in the St. Louis region to provide one phone - one number service to our customers," said Nancy Garvey, director of marketing, Southwestern Bell. "With FreedomPlus, calls follow you anytime, anywhere, and people can call just one number to reach you at home, work or on the go."

With FreedomPlus, residential and business customers can receive wireless calls at home or at the office when the phone is in cordless mode -- without incurring air-time charges. When customers leave home or work and are past the one-tenth mile range of their home or office, calls are routed over the wireless network just like a regular wireless call. FreedomPlus also provides superior call quality and wider conversation range than most cordless landline phones

FreedomPlus customers receive a Motorola telephone handset that resembles a wireless flip phone and base. To activate the system, customers simply plug the base into an ordinary phone jack and dial a toll-free 800 number. The base uses local landline telephone service and automatically connects all incoming calls to the handset -- eliminating the need for forwarding services.

The base offers speaker phone and page/intercom capabilities, as well as hold, redial, mute and rapid charging features. The FreedomPlus phone and base are available at Southwestern Bell authorized sales and service locations. To order, or for more information, customers can call 1-800-407-BELL.

Southwestern Bell is a subsidiary of SBC Communications (NYSE: SBC), one of the world's leading diversified telecommunications companies. SBC provides wireless communications through its Southwestern Bell and Cellular One brands to nearly four million customers in 63 service areas throughout the United States. The company's 9.4 percent market penetration leads the industry.