As part of AT&T�s aim to steer away from consumer telephone services,
the company announced its latest IP technology pact, a $30 million
partnership with travel technology provider,
Worldspan Technologies, Inc. (news
quote). The company will now become Worldspan�s lone provider for
its North American operations.
is hooking up the Atlanta-based company with a secure, high-speed
network-based IP Virtual Private Network bundle connected to an AT&T
Ultravailable Network (UVN) fiber ring at the host site. The travel
technology provider imparts worldwide electronic distribution of travel
information, Internet products and connectivity, and e-commerce
capabilities for travel agencies, travel suppliers and corporations via
a global distribution system (GDS) enabling 16,000 travel agencies and
other users worldwide to access travel data and booking capabilities for
approximately 800 service suppliers.
With AT&T�s UVN ring
in place, major airlines and large, high-volume travel agencies, will be
able to use a dedicated high-speed IP circuit that connects directly to
the ring. Smaller customers � including independent travel agencies,
will have database access when they use the same dedicated IP technology
or lower cost DSL Internet-based technology securely connecting to the
agreement, AT&T will also back up Worldspan's entire database at its
Atlanta-area Internet Data Center if emergencies were to happen as in
the case of a natural disaster. Worldspan will also have access to tools
online that give real-time reports on network performance and direct
access to AT&T's ordering, status, inventory and trouble management
systems through the secure AT&T BusinessDirect portal.
Noted is AT&T�s
effort to focus on growing their services aimed at the business sector.
The company has publicly expressed its objective to expand their IP
technology-based offerings by entering in the
space with their CallVantage service, and also through agreements such
as this one with Worldspan.
is the assistant editor for TMCnet.com and
Internet Telephony magazine. Previously, she was
the assistant editor for EContent magazine in
Connecticut. She can be reached by e-mail at