MCI Worldcom today launched a bundled Internet access, telephony and Web hosting service for small to medium sized businesses costing just under a tenner a month.
Launching next month, the service is aimed at businesses that don't yet have an Internet connection. But the service will have to fend off competition from a similar service - with no monthly fee - launched by BT in October.
"We've given up selling telecoms," Dave Drew, head of business marketing at MCI Worldcom, jokingly told vnunet.com. "This product portfolio links everyone into one single point of customer care, one single point from a sales perspective and one single point of call for billing."
For £9.99 per month, customers get a telephony and dialup Internet service with a single bill. They also get use of a national freephone 0800 number, but must pay for calls made to it. It also gives email for up to 25 people, website hosting and domain name registration.
In September BT launched BT Access, a subscription-free service for SMEs that provides 56Kbps Internet access, 20Mbytes of Web space and 10 email addresses. Drew said giving companies their own domain name makes the MCI Worldcom service a better proposition.
Dialup Internet access will be charged at 2.5 pence per minute during the day. Asked why dialup access couldn't be free, Drew said call revenue was needed to recoup MCI Worldcom's investment costs - it has spent £200 million on its UK network.
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