The telco has announced 'Fixed Number Anywhere', a new service designed to provide small businesses with a landline number that rings straight through to a mobile phone.
The theory is simple: tradition still suggests that having a landline number indicates a business is both established and local despite all its modern day inconveniences. Consequently a lot of time can be spent continually checking landline voicemail remotely from a mobile to see if any important messages have been left. To counter this Fixed Number Anywhere will allow subscribers to choose from a new number with a local geographical or free phone code. Up to five landline numbers can be linked to the same mobile handset - a sneaky way to convey size and also geographical reach. Up to 10 mobile phones can also be linked up to each landline number.
As for costs, O2 does not charge for calls made to a mobile via the Fixed Number Anywhere service, instead they will be charged to the caller at their standard rate for the fixed number dialled. Businesses bringing an existing BT 01 or 02 landline numbers to O2 and taking a new mobile connection will receive the service for free. Fixed prices are £10 per month for 01 and 02 landline numbers and £15pm for 0808 free phone numbers. Fixed Number Anywhere kicks off in August.
It's actually a rather smart idea. Though I'd concentrate on that 3G coverage and network stability first guys...