Shaw Communications has partnered with Bell Canada to fuel a plan to launch IP-based telephony services next year.
Initially targeting cable customers in western Canada, Bell will provide the cable MSO with wholesale residential telephony services, including interconnection to the public switched telephone network (PSTN) services and long distance termination.
Shaw, which revealed its VoIP plans on Friday in concert with its fiscal Q3 numbers, will use the Siemens Carrier Networks softswitch for its initial launch. The MSO said it is currently preparing its network and getting its OSS and billing house in order in anticipation of VoIP trials and deployments in early 2005.
On the financial front, Shaw, buoyed by strong subscriber gains for advanced cable services, posted a profit of $24.8 million (6 cents per share), up from a net loss of $13 million (10 cents per share) in the year-ago period. Also in the quarter, Shaw's satellite division delivered positive free cash flow for the first time.