The Baby Bells Are Finally Growing Up

A recent court ruling may give them coast-to-coast reach

They're unlikely to be called the Baby Bells much longer. Following a stunning New Year's Eve court ruling that--if it stands--would allow the regional phone companies into the nation's $80 billion long-distance market, the Bells are poised to grow up fast. In fact, some local operating companies that were carved out of the Bell System with the breakup of AT&T in 1984 are working to remake themselves in the image of old Ma Bell--delivering long-distance and local phone services across the U.S.

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