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Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP) services are appealing to more and more UK businesses as they become aware of its advantages, a communications analyst has claimed.

The cost saving offered by VOIP and the flexibility it affords workers has seen the technology - which was previously regarded as the preserve of big corporations - being embraced by small businesses, according to Paul Fegan of the Communications Management Association.

The change has come about as firms realise that VOIP "makes real sense operationally and commercially" he said, with the cost of installation outweighed by subsequent savings.

"The downside is that the instruments on the desk are more expensive but, as a package, the overall deal is cost-effective. You have to look at the totality."

"Calls are cheaper. Network calls and intra-organisational calls are cheaper than traditional technology."

VoIP services typically use a broadband connection to provide telephone calls via a PC with a handset or a special adaptor connected to a traditional telephone.

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