The Association of U S West Retirees



Qwest's Notebaert focuses on fast web service, package deals

By News wire reports

Wednesday, September 20, 2006


Qwestís digital subscriber line, or DSL, service is available to 81 percent of customers in its 14-state market, Notebaert said today in an interview in New York, where he was attending a Goldman Sachs Group Inc. conference.

"In a perfect world, we would put bandwidth in tonight because we know youíre ready to pay for it tomorrow," Notebaert said.

Qwest is putting about 40 percent of its capital spending into Internet access. The Denver-based company is trying to stem the loss of phone customers to cable-television providers by packaging Web access, local- and long-distance calling, wireless service through Sprint Nextel Corp. and television from DirecTV Group Inc. Itís also testing its own TV services.

Notebaert is holding off on expanding the TV trial until the company can assess customer reaction and costs. He said heís not convinced people want TV from phone companies.

"It we canít put a product out thatís equal to or better than our competitors, why would we do it?" he said. "Just giving you 500 channels may not be the right answer."

Qwest has about 270,000 so-called entertainment customers, including 70,000 of its own and 200,000 satellite-TV customers through DirecTV. The company has also acquired franchises to build and sell TV service in 23 communities.

Telephone and cable-TV companies are trying to capture each otherís customers by selling combined services.

Cable companies are stealing phone customers with calling and Internet plans, while phone companies are expanding
into TV service.,2777,DRMN_23910_5007936,00.html