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Here's a Foolish interview with Verizon (BellAtlantic+GTE+Airtouch) CFO Ted Langston:


TMF: Verizon plans to spend more than $3 billion building out
its network this year. Talk about the infrastructure improvements and how they
will improve the system.

Langston: We're migrating the network to digital. As I said earlier, about 75% of it
has been converted and by the end of the year it will be over 80%. The
advantage is the capacity benefit we get out of it. The CDMA network we
deployed has between six and ten times the capacity of a traditional analog
network. If you compare it with TDMA, it has about three times the capacity. It's
cost beneficial to us to transfer our customers to the digital network and that's
why we're investing heavily to deploy it.

TMF: How long before the system is fully digital?

Langston: By 2003 we will have virtually 100% digital coverage.


TMF: When will you be rolling out 2.5G and 3G technology?

Langston: We're trialing 3G in the field right now. We expect that it will go into
commercial use in the middle of 2001. The benefits come especially on the data
side. Our current technology transmits data at 14.4 Kbps and that jumps to 144
Kbps with 3G.

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