It look some major sleuthing – all of my Internets skills, actually – but I finally discovered how to order standalone DSL (that is, DSL without phone service, a.k.a. “naked DSL”) from AT&T/Bellsouth! With this deal you can get high-speed Internet access without paying for a dial tone – redundant for people like my buddy Scott whose only phone is a mobile one.
AT&T was forced to offer this service as a condition for gobbling up Bellsouth. AT&T wasn’t forced to market it, however. Check Bellsouth’s FastAccess webpage: it isn’t there. Nor is it on the Pricing Terms and Conditions page, which describes all of the other DSL plans. In fact, the $10 DSL deal was once considered “buried” in the small print but its actually far more visible on Bellsouth’s website than this deal.
So, how difficult is it to find out about? It sure stumped me for a while! Do a Google search on Bellsouth Standalone DSL or Bellsouth naked DSL. Most of the results (at the time of this writing) are worthless – describing AT&T’s regulatory requirement to offer it but not telling anyone how to order it.
My big breakthrough was a Google search for a related application: homebrewing DSL through unpowered phone company wires without the usual Internet service tacked on. I searched for Bellsouth “dry pair”, which brought me to this forum post at the excellent DSLReports site. AT&T calls the service “DSL Direct Line Without Voice” on its bills.
Here’s the skinny from bluepoint951, a user at DSLReports:
After months of waiting i managed to get Stand Alone FastAccess. It is available upon request through Customer Service 1(888)757.6500. SAFA Line $15/mo – $10 DSL Line Credit + Your choice of DSL Ultra or Higher. Refer to Bundle 97. No Cellular/Voice/TV requirements.
SAFAL + DSL Ultra =$37.95
SAFAL + DSL Xtrme 3.0=$42.95
SAFAL + DSL Xtrme 6.0=$47.95
So there you go. The thread that this came from is a very active one, so be sure to refer to it to find out the experiences people are having in signing up. Also, if you decide to take the leap, please post your experiences here on MT.Net so I can track them. Thanks!