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UK employees are no longer tied to working from their desks as the freedom allowed by wireless and mobile broadband comes to fruition.

That is the analysis of the Centre for Future Studies in a recent report, which has suggested that mobile broadband and wireless technology have created the rise of "the virtual office".

According to the study, 63 per cent of small-to-medium enterprises (SME) in the north-east now offer flexible working opportunities including home working.

The sales director of one IT firm commented: "If you have a mobile phone in one hand and a computer in another, it doesn't matter where your desk is.

"But you do need decent bandwidth to enable certain software systems to run effectively."

Mobile broadband was also recently highlighted as a useful tool for shoppers who wish to check the prices of products while on the move.

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