Rebtel, VoIP provider denied short-code access by Verizon Wireless, Alltel Corp. and T-Mobile USA Inc.
Rebtel, a Voice over Internet Protocol firm that offers low-cost international calling on mobile phones, said Verizon Wireless, Alltel Corp. and T-Mobile USA Inc. rejected requests for short codes for creating local numbers by text message.
“We believe Verizon’s rejection of our short-code campaign is an anti-competitive abuse of power, just like their rejection of NARAL Pro-Choice America’s campaign was interference with political speech and activism,” said Greg Spector, Rebtel’s spokesman. “Enough is enough. It’s time to do what’s right for the consumer—not Verizon’s profits.”
After initially rejecting NARAL’s request for a short code to enable the group to send text messages to supporters’ cellphones, Verizon Wireless promptly reversed course as part of a policy shift and granted the application.
Jeffrey Nelson, a Verizon Wireless spokesman, noted Rebtel’s short-code application was denied in May and that the firm did not appeal. Nelson said Verizon Wireless has a policy of rejecting short codes from companies that seek to compete with the No. 2 carrier, whether it be Rebtel or its traditional cellular competitors
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