VoIP technology spells the end of traditional home telephone numbers, according to an industry analyst.
A study by JupiterResearch claims that the rise in fixed/mobile telephone services appeals strongly to Europeans, and that location will cease to be important for either making or receiving calls.
The report said that 27 per cent of consumers are already interested in regularly using their mobile phone in place of their home telephone.
"VoIP will convert the home telephone from analogue to digital and, once digital, the home telephone number will become unfixed," said Ian Fogg, lead author of the reports and senior analyst at JupiterResearch.
"It will no longer be available just at home, but in the office, in internet cafes and even on mobile phones."
Fogg explained that VoIP telephony is attractive to consumers because services are cheap and flexible.
The study found that PC-based VoIP telephony already appeals to 17 per cent of consumers in Europe, with 21 per cent interested in diverting their home telephone to a mobile phone showing their desire to use their home telephone number wherever they are.
However, Fogg warned that services must be allowed to operate across other providers' systems if uptake is to be successful.
"Mobile operators and internet VoIP competitors must lobby to ensure that their VoIP services operate unimpeded across other ISPs' connections, or they must be prepared to invest in fixed broadband to ensure the security of network supply for their VoIP services," he said.
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