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Expect Verizon ISDN Changes in May

Now customers would order ISDN Basic Rate Interface service as an overlay to Centrex lines from the telecom company

Expect ISDN changes from Verizon in May.

As readers will recall, we reported recently that Sports Backhaul Network’s Mike Simpson feared Verizon was planning to drop basic ISDN along the East coast come May. That’s not happening, but changes are coming.

Verizon offers ISDN Basic Rate Interface service as an overlay on either legacy business lines or Centrex lines.

“We are going to continue to offer the service with Centrex lines and have no plans at this time to make any changes,” a Verizon spokesman tells RW.

However, Verizon will no longer offer ISDN BRI service with business lines to new customers as of May 18. “Current ISDN BRI business line subscribers can keep their existing service. However after May 18, we will not allow those customers to make moves, adds or changes to the service,” according to Verizon. 

The changes are taking effect nationwide.

When ordering new ISDN lines from Verizon, station engineers would now ask for “Centrex ISDN BRI.”

The clarification is good news for broadcasters and Simpson’s company, which provides the ISDN backhaul for NFL radio broadcasts from the away game stadiums to the NFL flagship. His company handles more than half of the 32 NFL teams. We reported Simpson originally feared Verizon would not offer new ISDN service entirely beginning in May, only retaining current ISDN customers.

Overall, the future of ISDN remains limited, however as broadcasters increasingly turn to IP alternatives for transporting audio.

Verizon says it continually evaluates its products and services to meet customer needs. A Verizon spokesman told RW its ISDN services, originally introduced in the 1980s, is a product that has seen a steady decline as customers have adopted newer and more efficient technologies to deliver voice and data services.