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AOL, SBC Agree on Internet Deal

March 11, 1999

DULLES, Va. (AP) _ America Online customers in California, Texas, Missouri, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Kansas may be able to speed their access to the Internet under an agreement reached Thursday between AOL and SBC Communications Inc.

SBC will provide high-speed Internet connections through digital lines of Southwest Bell and Pacific Bell, which it owns. SBC currently provides high-speed digital lines to 2 million homes and hopes to increase that number to 8.4 million by the end of the year.

Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

In January, AOL, the nation’s largest Internet service provider, announced a similar deal with Bell Atlantic Corp., which hopes to have the high-speed connection available to 7.5 million homes in the Northeast by the end of the year. Under the Bell Atlantic deal, customers would pay about $20 a month for the high-speed connection to AOL.

At a typical speed of up to 640 kilobits per second, the high-speed connection is more than 20 times faster than the typical desktop computer modems hooked to regular telephone lines.

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