MTS Allstream to Work With Microsoft and Alcatel-Lucent to Introduce Enhanced Broadband Internet and TV Services



    Stock Symbol: MBT

    WINNIPEG, Jan. 17 /CNW/ - Continuing to lead the Canadian
telecommunications sector when it comes to delivering TV service, MTS
Allstream Inc. ("MTS Allstream") announced today that it will move forward
with steps to introduce next generation high-speed Internet and TV services to
Manitoba customers, with more high-definition TV ("HDTV") offerings, personal
and digital video recorder ("PVR and DVR") functionality, improved guide
features and other advances. The new services will be powered by a combination
of network connectivity provided by Alcatel-Lucent Canada Inc. ("Alcatel
Lucent Canada") and the award-winning Microsoft Mediaroom Internet Protocol
Television ("IPTV") and multimedia platform.
    MTS Allstream is entering into agreements with both Microsoft and
Alcatel-Lucent that will enable the company to introduce an initial set of
services on a limited basis in 2008. A trial location outside of Winnipeg is
being considered.
    "This is an evolution of our existing Internet and MTS TV services, and
positions MTS Allstream to continue its success as Manitoba's
telecommunications provider of choice, be it local service, high-speed
Internet, television or wireless," said Kelvin Shepherd, President, Consumer
Markets Division, MTS Allstream. "Leveraging the broadband network and MTS TV
investments we have made over the past several years, we will be adding the
established and successful Microsoft Mediaroom solution to extend our current
proven digital TV platform. Together with connectivity from Alcatel-Lucent,
this will provide the basis for not only advanced TV services, but
improvements to our high-speed Internet service, and the opportunity for new
services and features that cross the different platforms we offer, including
wireless. This will reinforce the success of our bundling strategy, and the
competitive strength of our business without impacting our capital spending in
2008."
    "As the television becomes connected to the broadband network and
powerful software is added, new connected TV experiences become possible, so
people can connect with their favorite content, services, devices and people,"
said Christine Heckart, general manager of marketing for Microsoft TV at
Microsoft Corp. "Together with Alcatel-Lucent and Microsoft, MTS Allstream is
very well positioned to offer a way for its customers to experience the next
generation of television, featuring entirely new connected TV services."
    "As the world leader in both IPTV and Mobile TV deployment, we are
bringing our real-world experience and knowledge to help MTS Allstream move to
the next generation of information, communications and entertainment
experiences for their customers," said Alex Giosa, president of Alcatel-Lucent
Canada. "We also support MTS Allstream's time-to-market objectives by
implementing a secure and reliable infrastructure capable of delivering
high-end multimedia services."
    Further details on the introduction of these new services will be
provided over the next several months.

    About MTS Allstream

    MTS Allstream Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Manitoba Telecom
Services Inc., and is one of Canada's leading national communication solutions
providers, delivering innovative products and services through the Enterprise
Solutions and Consumer Markets divisions. The Enterprise Solutions division,
which operates under the Allstream brand nationally and under the MTS brand in
Manitoba, is a leading competitor in the national business and wholesale
markets. This division offers customers a portfolio of solutions tailored to
the needs of medium and large businesses looking for success in a world of
rapidly evolving technology - Internet protocol-based communications, unified
communications, voice and data connectivity services. The Consumer Markets
division leads every telecommunications market segment in Manitoba, delivering
a full suite of next generation wireless, high-speed Internet and data,
digital television and wireline voice services under the MTS brand, as well as
small business services across Canada under the Allstream brand, and security
and alarm monitoring services through AAA Alarm Systems Ltd., an affiliate of
MTS Allstream which also operates in other western provinces. MTS Allstream's
extensive national broadband fibre optic network spans more than
24,300 kilometres, and provides international connections through strategic
alliances and interconnection agreements with other international service
providers. Manitoba Telecom Services Inc.'s common shares are listed on The
Toronto Stock Exchange (trading symbol: MBT). For more information, please
visit: www.mtsallstream.com.

    About Microsoft Mediaroom

    The award-winning Microsoft Mediaroom Internet Protocol Television (IPTV)
and multimedia software platform is driving the future of television by
enabling broadband service providers to deliver new connected TV and
entertainment experiences to consumers worldwide. Microsoft Mediaroom provides
new ways for consumers to experience TV as part of their connected, digital
lifestyle while also creating new business opportunities for broadband service
providers, hardware manufacturers, content creators, advertisers and
application developers. Over 20 of the world's leading service providers
across four continents have selected the Microsoft Mediaroom platform to drive
their digital TV services. More information on Microsoft Mediaroom and the
opportunity to deliver the best in TV plus all your media in one place is
available at http://www.microsoft.com/tv and
http://www.microsoftmediaroom.com.

    About Microsoft

    Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq "MSFT") is the worldwide leader in
software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their
full potential.

    About Alcatel-Lucent

    Alcatel-Lucent (Euronext Paris and NYSE:   ALU) provides solutions that
enable service providers, enterprises and governments worldwide, to deliver
voice, data and video communication services to end-users. As a leader in
fixed, mobile and converged broadband networking, IP technologies,
applications, and services, Alcatel-Lucent offers the end-to-end solutions
that enable compelling communications services for people at home, at work and
on the move. With operations in more than 130 countries, Alcatel-Lucent is a
local partner with global reach. The company has the most experienced global
services team in the industry, and one of the largest research, technology and
innovation organizations in the telecommunications industry. Alcatel-Lucent
achieved adjusted proforma revenues of Euro 18.3 billion in 2006 and is
incorporated in France, with executive offices located in Paris. (All figures
exclude impact of activities transferred to Thales). For more information,
visit Alcatel-Lucent on the Internet: http://www.alcatel-lucent.com.

    Note to editors: If you are interested in viewing additional information
on Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft Web page at
http://www.microsoft.com/presspass on Microsoft's corporate information pages.
Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication,
but may since have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and
analysts may contact Microsoft's Rapid Response Team or other appropriate
contacts listed at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/contactpr.mspx.





For further information:

For further information: MTS Allstream contacts: Media: Greg Burch,
Manager Corporate Communications, (204) 941-8576,
media.relations@mtsallstream.com; Investors: Ian Chadsey, Vice-President
Investor Relations, (204) 941-8283, investor.relations@mtsallstream.com;
Microsoft contacts: Microsoft TV team, Weber Shandwick, Phone: (425) 452-5400,
mstv@webershandwick.com; Alcatel-Lucent Contacts: Denise Panyik-Dale, Tel:
(908) 582-4897, dpanyikdale@alcatel-lucent.com; Mark Burnworth, Tel: + 33 (0)1
40 76 50 84, mark.burnworth@alcatel-lucent.com

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MTS Allstream

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