During the next year or so, demand for so-called voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) equipment will rise, as, BT, France Telecom, SBC Communications, and other service providers begin selling Internet phone services, Kevin Mitchell, an analyst at Infonetics Research, said Monday.
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"It shows that VoIP is in their plans and creates momentum," according to Mitchell.
Revenue in the industry will, in the short term, be influenced by a preference among corporations, government entities and telephone service providers to use a, Infonetics said.
Cisco Systems and VoIP upstarts such as Shoreline Communications and Veraz Networks sell "pure" Internet-based voice systems that completely bypass the traditional phone network. Long-established voice players such as Nortel Networks, Avaya and Siemens are responding to the VoIP threat with hybrid systems that incorporate both traditional phone and IP elements.
Infonetics found that phone lines shipped using a mix of telephone and IP phone technology accounted for 68 percent of all IP lines in 2003. But pure IP lines were up 29 percent from 2002, the research firm said.