ruralLong-distance service providers that have been complaining about rural call completion reporting requirements may find that task simplified now that vendors have stepped in to address that need.

At least one major network operator has invested in a third-party product that automates rural call completion reporting. Analytics provider TEOCO yesterday announced that an unnamed tier one service provider has purchased its Rural Call Completion Analytics Solution. And in an interview TEOCO Executive Director Derek Canfield said the company has other customers for the product as well.

The FCC last year ruled that long-distance service providers above a certain size are required to file quarterly reports about the number of calls that are not completed to rural areas because they did not go through, weren’t answered or for other reasons.

The commission imposed this requirement in response to complaints from rural service providers who argued that some long-distance carriers or the companies that terminate calls on their behalf were deliberately failing to complete calls to rural areas. It is widely believed that some originating carriers or their wholesalers drop calls to rural customers to avoid paying per-minute call termination charges to the rural carriers who provide phone service to the called party. Those charges tend to be higher in rural areas to help cover higher network costs.

TEOCO’s rural call completion offering is available as an optional module for the company’s Analytics Platform or as an outsourced service. At least one other vendor has an offering that automates rural call completion reporting, but Canfield said TEOCO’s offering is unique in that it also provides root cause analytics.

“Clients have the ability to look at call completion along dimensions such as wholesale customers, vendors they may choose in routing [calls], or their own network equipment,” said Canfield.

Service providers can use that information to compare one intermediate service provider with others and use that information to “proactively manage and monitor routing vendors,” he said. The intermediate service providers are sometimes called “least cost routers.”

Traditionally long-distance carriers routed traffic to different least cost routers based on which one had the best price at any particular time, but now those decisions can be made based on the optimal mix of price and performance, Canfield said.


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