A recent survey estimates that in the past year nearly two million British adults have used their computers to make phone calls. With another 1.9 million non-users likely to adopt the technology within a year, VoIP is set to grow.
Skype, the VoIP software company which was bought by eBay last year, was the most used service, with nearly 48% of the VoIP calls made from the UK.
The next most popular service was Microsoft’s MSN Messenger, with a fifth of all calls, followed by US company Vonage’s service (6%), BT (6%) and Wanadoo (%). Most VoIP calls are free to other computer owners, as long as the recipients of the call use the same software.
James Myring, the associate director of Continental Research, acknowledged that Skype, as one of the earliest VoIP providers, has a big “first mover” advantage. But “BT has huge potential to roll out VoIP to customers on a large scale. It will be concerned about losing market share from its fixed line business. For BT, it might be a case of compete or lose.”
According to the survey, 56 per cent of those with VoIP expect to increase their usage. Myring noted, “VoIP usage is admittedly growing from a relatively small base. But as utility bills increase, people will be looking at how they can cut down on their monthly outgoings.”
A recent survey estimates that in the past year nearly two million British adults have used their computers to make phone calls.
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