Nokia Corp. plans to have phones that can switch between mobile and fixed networks available for consumers next year, as telecoms operators increasingly try to woo customers with converged services.
The world’s largest handset maker will start selling a dual-network phone targeted at corporate users this year, and one for consumers is due in the first half of 2006, Olli-Pekka Lintula, director of strategic marketing at the technology platforms division, told Dow Jones Newswires.
“All future phones for enterprises from Nokia will also be wi-fi equipped,” Lintula said.
Convergence is the buzzword in the telecoms industry. In June, U.K. telephone company BT Group PLC (BT) launched a service using a Motorola Inc. (MOT) handset that functions as a mobile phone outside the home but switches on to a cheaper broadband fixed line inside the house.
The initiative is being watched closely as it could help fixed-line operators like BT stem contract cancellations and win back market share from wireless companies.
Nokia predicts there will be speedy growth for phone calls transported over Internet-based wireless networks.