I popped on over to the UTOPIA website today and found that they’ve added two new service providers: 1Wire Communications and InfoWest. I don’t know a lot about 1Wire, but I do know that InfoWest is a well-regarded CLEC in the St. George area. Both companies will be providing voice and data services to business customers. 1Wire also offers a hosted PBX service similar to Telesphere. It would be nice, though, if more of these companies would open up to residential customers. It seems like it’s been a while since a new residential provider busted onto the scene.
That may change, however. I heard a rumor that Beehive Telephone, a rural ILEC in Utah and eastern Nevada, is considering joining UTOPIA to extend their reach. I remember that they’ve previously had some harsh words for UTOPIA, so this would be a major turnaround for them. Personally, I think it’s a smart move for any ILEC, rural or not, to use UTOPIA to extend their reach without having to invest in more network. You may remember that Emery Telecom was considering joining iProvo many moons ago but later backed out.