Pacific Telesis Group Inc’s Pacific Bell unit yesterday announced that it was embarking on a $16,000m investment plan to upgrade its core network infrastructure over the next seven years to Integrated Services Digital Network to provide advanced voice, data and video services, starting in the San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles, Orange County and San Diego. It says it intends that more than 1.5m homes will be hooked up to the superhighway by the end of 1996, more than 5m by the end of the decade. Biggest beneficiary of the project will be AT&T Co, whose share is put at $5,000m over seven years. By 1995 or 1996, the network is to be capable of providing fully interactive digital and telephony services. The network will combine fibre optics and co-axial cable rather than twisted pair, with fibre extending to the township before co-ax takes over for the final leg to the home, where it will be terminated by a new socket being developed by AT&T that will have outlets for speech telephony, video and data. The network will be able to handle video dial tone services such as broadcast video, premium channels, pay-per-view, video-on-demand, multi-media services and interactive games. The network will operate over the 50MHz to 750MHz range in the forward direction the 5MHz to 40MHz range in the reverse direction. The reverse bandwidth from the home is dedicated over a small servicing area, which enables wideband capability at the home. The network will use Pacific Bell’s Asynchronous Transfer Mode net as a hub, making it possible for a wide variety of service providers to access it.