British Telecommunications (BT) has announced it will launch a line of wireless network products – aimed at allowing UK homes, and small offices, easier connections to the Internet and other online services.

The products, to be launched early next year, are being designed to support both wireless LAN (local area networking) and phone systems. BT expects as many as 5 million UK homes to feature networks within the next five years, and forecasts sales of the wireless home networking products in the UK to reach over £35 million in the first year, the company said in a statement.

Developed in cooperation with US company Home Wireless Networks (HWN), the wireless network home products were designed to integrate both voice and data, in the same wireless network. The line's core products of data and phone sockets, controllers, and handsets will allow for wireless connections between peripherals and handsets. They will be available with 2-line and 4-line options, BT said.

In the face of increased competition from local telecommunication companies and smaller, startup ISPs (Internet service providers) such as Localtel, BT has recently launched a flurry of new Internet related products and services, including a voice-over-Internet service in April.