Research company Informa predicts there will be 92 million subscribers to converged services by 2011, representing 3% of all global subscriptions. Around 47 million units will be dual-purpose handsets by that time.
BT and France Telecom are already investing heavily in the technology in a bid to differentiate themselves from wireless-only players such as Vodafone. This will also help BT to stem the flow of fixed line customers to mobile operators.
Most of this rapid growth will be on the consumer side, but 15% of these converged phones will be for business use, predicts Informa.