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Comcast-Commissioned Study Calls For Interconnection Help From Congress

Cable IP (Internet Protocol) based voice service could save consumers $110 billion a year. That's according to a study commissioned by Comcast, the nation's largest cable operator and one of the most agressive providers of that voice service.

While FCC Chairman Kevin Martin has been pushing cable to lower its bills, the study says cable could help phone customers lower theirs, saying they have already saved $23.5 billion. The study, from Washington-based consulting firm, MiCRA, combines "widely accepted economic data sources and forecasting tools," says the company, to come to that figure of economic impact, based on the premise that each phone customer could save $12 per month of $144 per year by switching to cable voice service, and businesses even more.

Not surprisingly, the study concludes that Congress should pass a law guaranteeing cable companies access to the incumbent phone network's lines.

The study projects that cable phone customers will increase from 12 million in 2007 to 31 million in 2012.

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.