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BT is to dump its mobile phone partners and hook up with one-time rival Vodafone instead, according to The Daily Telegraph. The tie-up would enable BT to offer its punters fixed and mobile services charged all on the same bill. An announcement is expected this week.

A spokeswoman for BT declined to comment, except to say that the telco was on the hunt for a mobile phone partner and that it is working through the tender process.

BT has been looking to get a decent slice of the UK's mobile phone market ever since it spun off mm02, its mobile division, to help pay off huge debts. In 2002 it teamed up with O2 to provide mobile phone services for its corporate customers. And last year, BT hopped into bed with T-Mobile to offer a new service aimed at families.

BT had hoped the T-Mobile deal would net it around 100,000 punters by the end of 2004 and a million by the end of 2005. But take-up has been disappointing, The Daily Telegraph reports. ®

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