A company, other than a local exchange carrier, regional Bell operating company, or AT&T, that provides its customers with an alternative to the local telephone company for local transport of private line, special access, and interstate transport of switched access telecommunications services. CAPs initially built their own facilities, requiring a great deal of capital expenditures. With the Telecommunications Act of 1996, competitive carriers were offered more options: building out their own facilities (what CAPs did) and reselling local service. Competitive carriers in the local market are broadly termed CLECs (competitive local exchange carriers).
CAP Access services provided by a company other than a LEC, RBOC, or AT&T that is authorized to provide such service.
Companies that compete with the local telephone company (LEC). Most CAP's and CLEC's were created around the time the Telecommunications Reform Act of 1996 opened up local telephone services to competition. Prior to the 1996 Act, the LEC's generally had a monopoly on providing local exchange services (dial tone, hunt groups, local loops, etc.) [Back to Glossary Table of Contents
A company that provides an alternative means of establishing a connection between a user organization and an Interexchange Carrier, completely bypassing the Local Exchange Carrier.
A group of companies who compete to provide network access.
A company that provides exchange access services in competition with an established U.S. telephone local exchange carrier.
A telecommunications company that provides an alternative to a LEC for local transport and special access telecommunications services.
An alternative carrier to local exchange carriers (LEC) for provisioning of local loop to interexchange carrier (IXC) services.
An ILEC competitor prior to the Telecommunications Act of 1996.