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Home Office Owners Lead Consumer VoIP Charge

Households with home offices will drive consumer adoption of voice-over-Internet (VoIP) in the next year, a research firm said Wednesday.

In a research note, Framingham, Mass.-based IDC claimed that income-generating or corporate-provided home offices are two to three times more likely to sign up for VoIP in the next 12 months than is the average household.

By IDC's survey results, 39 percent of corporate home offices and 24 percent of home-based businesses are interested in or already using VoIP. In comparison, only 11 percent of households without home offices are what the research firm called "VoIP aware."

"Home offices will adopt VoIP communications at a faster rate than U.S. households overall," said Chris Hazelton, IDC senior analyst, in a statement. "Although cost savings are important, features such as convergence with mobile phones will be increasingly important to home offices."

Even those expressing interest in VoIP, however, remain wary of the service, said Hazelton, and frequently add it as a second communication technology without ditching traditional the landline phone service.