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TELEMAC PHONE OFFERS IDEAL PRE PAID PRODUCT

Telemac Cellular Corp.’s cellular debit phone is a product of carriers’ wish lists for the ideal prepaid service, said company President Scott McGregor. The SCOTT (Simple Credit Options with Telemac Technology) phone allows roaming and long-distance calling, provides customers various payment options, sends data in real-time and can be rapidly available in all of a carrier’s markets, said McGregor.

And the brains are in the phone.

The old way of thinking is “whatever you do, throw it on the switch so you can control it,” said McGregor, which requires installing a software program at each switch that is cumbersome, costly and high maintenance. “This paradigm must be broken,” he added.

Telemac “miniaturized” its patented worldwide call accounting technology and put it into phones, said McGregor. Any cellular phone can be fit with the technology, he added. Retailers receive phones preprogrammed.

Once in use, data from a SCOTT phone is sent in real-time from carriers to TeleMac which monitors usage patterns. Carriers have the ability to shut off phones in cases of fraud and switch phones between debit and standard cellular service using a TeleMac proprietary device. This option will help avoid churn, said McGregor. He added that the phones are easy to upgrade.

The company concluded beta tests last fall with AT&T Wireless Services Inc., AirTouch Communications Inc. and Alltel Mobile. Mitsubishi Wireless Communications Inc. will introduce a SCOTT phone this June, said McGregor. Agreements with NEC Corp., NeaWea of Korea and Ericsson Inc. are in the works.

McGregor expects international business to soar as well. In South America 70 percent of cellular service applicants are rejected. In the United Kingdom, which lacks any sophisticated credit-checking system, prepaid could double the subscription rate.

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