The rise of Naked DSL among ISPs has led to an increase in the number of organisations offering voice over internet protocol (VoIP) services, according to the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA).
In a report titled, Changes in the Australian VoIP market, the ACMA noted at the end of June this year there were 268 service providers offering VoIP, up from the 215 reported the year before.
"Of the 268 providers in Australia, two thirds were ISPs—a change on the previous year when just under a half of the total number of VoIP providers were classified as ISPs," the report reads. "Figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics at December 2008 indicated over half of ISPs (52 per cent) offered VoIP as part of a bundled package to residential and small medium enterprises (SMEs), an increase from 42 per cent in December 2007.
"One of the key differences on the previous year is the availability of Naked DSL which has enabled ISPs to offer VoIP as part of a bundled package with broadband access."
However, the ACMA noted revenue generated by VoIP service providers has been small due to the use of free offerings.
Additionally, the ACMA report pointed to data collected by Roy Morgan showing "14 per cent of the Australian population aged 14 years and over had access to a VoIP service at home as at June 2009", representing a 4 per cent increase on the previous financial year.
"The ACMA’s commissioned survey at April 2009 found that the main reasons for the non-use of VoIP include lack of awareness (48 per cent), satisfaction with current voice communications (16 per cent) and too hard or too much of a hassle to set up (15 per cent)," the report reads.
It also highlighted statistics from Nielsen’s Online Netview that showed the use of the free Skype service by Australians had risen from 876,000 people in the last financial year to 1.01 million to the end of June, 2009.