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June 2, 2004

MCI Launches Wireless IP-RELAY Communication Service

From: PR Newswire (press release) - Jun 2, 2004

New Nationwide Service Provides Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Community Freedom to Communicate On the Go

ASHBURN, Va., June 2 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- MCI, Inc., (MCIA.PK) today announced the first nationwide Wireless IP-RELAY communication service, making it possible for the deaf and hard-of-hearing to communicate with others using a wireless data device. This new service turns a wireless data device into a "cell phone" for the deaf and hard-of-hearing and provides users the ability to communicate "on-the-go" to anyone, anytime, anywhere in the U.S., rather than being limited to placing relay calls from a computer.

"We're a society on the move and most of us take for granted the ability to communicate with others while walking down the street, sitting in an airport or out shopping," said Steve Johnson, vice president of MCI Information Services and Data Solutions. "With our new wireless IP-Relay service, we are eliminating the boundaries for hearing impaired individuals to communicate in a mobile environment."

In a matter of minutes, users can download the necessary software from an applications menu on their wireless handheld device, making it possible for the device to place relay calls. Once enabled, users simply click on the Wireless IP-RELAY icon and are connected with a Relay Operator. Callers simply type what they want to say on the wireless device and the operator facilitates the call. The service also features keyboard shortcuts, font size and style options plus the ability to make sequential calls.

There is currently no charge to use the Wireless IP-RELAY service to call anywhere in the United States. However, the normal connectivity rates charged by the user's wireless carrier still apply.

Wireless IP-RELAY, which was beta-tested earlier this year and given hands-on testing by students at leading universities for the deaf, is receiving high marks from the deaf and hard-of-hearing community.

MCI is currently working with a number of wireless device manufacturers and providers to further expand the service to ensure all deaf and hard-of- hearing persons have access to wireless relay service. As new wireless devices that support Wireless IP-RELAY become available, MCI will update its website at

About, powered by MCI, is the one-stop site for every relay calling need. Deaf and hard-of-hearing persons can sign their conversations via IP- RELAY VRS, receive calls from voice users via IP-RELAY Voice/NexTalk, communicate with any voice user through IP-RELAY Text in addition to a host of other communication options. MCI was the first company to offer IP-based relay service and is committed to providing the most convenient, confidential and technologically advanced ways to keep people connected.

About MCI
MCI, Inc. (MCIA.PK) is a leading global communications provider, delivering innovative, cost-effective advanced communications connectivity to businesses, governments and consumers. With the industry's most expansive global IP backbone, based on the number of company-owned points-of-presence, and wholly-owned data networks, MCI develops the converged communications products and services that are the foundation for commerce and communications in today's markets. For more information, go to


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