In a move that could open the floodgates for mobile operators entering the home phone market, mobile giant O2 has announced that from March it will offer landline packages for both new and existing broadband customers.
The firm said the move was a significant development in strategy to strengthen its position as a key provider of broadband to the home by giving customers the convenience of having broadband and home packages combined.
The firm will be offering two home phone packages: an "Evening and Weekend" deal for £9.50 per month and an "Anytime" package for £12.50 per month.
Sally Cowdry, UK marketing director at O2, said the move was a big step for the company as it seeks to expand its offering to the market.
“This is the most important launch for us in the home space since we entered the broadband market and is part of our strategy to evolve beyond mobile to a leading connectivity brand," she said.
Richard Thurston from Analysys Mason said the move signified O2's intention to move deeper into the home market, and beyond simply being a mobile operator.
"Multi-play offerings are essential in the consumer space, and O2's bundled offerings are likely to have some traction, especially as O2 is offering fixed telephony at a discounted price," he said.
Thurston also said he expects other mobile firms to follow this path.
"O2 is not alone as a mobile operator trying to penetrate the fixed market, both consumer and business and we can expect Vodafone to be a major fixed line player too," he added.
Both packages include services such as number hiding, Last Caller ID, and Last Number Delete. A number of other services such as Voicemail, Call Waiting, Caller Display, Call Barring and Ring Back are available for an additional monthly fee.
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