You might’ve heard that by the end of 2025, BT plans to switch off its traditional, analogue telephone lines (PSTN and ISDN) in favour of a fully digital network – and it will impact pretty much everyone, including businesses. What’s more, the big switch-off could affect more than simply your phone line and internet connection – including the likes of alarms, access systems, CCTV and fax machines (basically anything that still uses landlines to work).
Do you know how the big switch-off is going to affect you? Is your business prepared for the change? As telecoms specialists, the team at GRH Comms has put together this handy guide to ensure your business is ready for the deadline.
What exactly is being switched off?
At the moment, BT is in the process of phasing out all traditional, analogue telephone lines. The plans were announced in 2015, with the deadline being December 31st 2025 – and this is happening everywhere, not just in the UK. With that in mind, businesses will no longer be able to order new PSTN or ISDN lines as of September 2023.
What is PSTN?
In short, PSTN, or Public Switched Telephone Network, is a collection of the world’s circuit-switched telephone networks. Traditionally, it relies on underground copper or fibre optic cables to transmit information from place to place.
What is ISDN?
Introduced in 1986, ISDN, otherwise known as Integrated Serviced Digital Network, is a set of communication standards that allows data, including sounds and images, to be transmitted digitally (giving users the chance to make video calls or allowing for more than one call to take place, for example). ISDN uses PSTN circuits to run but provides users will a much higher quality of communication.
Why is the BT switch-off happening?
It’s no secret that the way we communicate is fast-evolving thanks to the digital revolution. This means that the likes of PSTN and ISDN are both becoming increasingly outdated, and furthermore, hard to maintain – hence the big switch-off.
What does this mean for your business?
We get it, 2025 seems ages away, right? But trust us, you need to start planning now to prevent any disruption to your business.
If your business still relies on PSTN or ISDN then it’s essential that you act as soon as possible because once the shutdown happens, you will no longer be able to communicate, unless you have installed a new system.
How will your business communicate?
So, if BT is switching off PSTN and ISDN, then how will your business communicate? Well, there are two main types of phone systems that you can choose from, both of which use an IP system (simply put, communications made via the internet rather than fixed copper lines).
VoIP, or Voice Over Internet Protocol, refers to phone calls being made over the internet, rather than using a fixed-line.
SIP, otherwise known as Session Initiation Protocol, is an application that supports VoIP. SIP allows businesses to communicate using a variation of multi-digital media, including video calls and instant messages.
If you’re not sure which system is right for you, then get in touch with GRH Comms. Our experts can advise and support you, so you are well-prepared for 2025.
Failing to prepare could cost you – it’s time to get in touch with GRH Comms
We can’t stress enough how important it is for businesses to prepare and plan for the BT switch-off.
At GRH Comms, we pride ourselves on getting to know each of our clients, so we can tailor a customised communications package, designed to maximise efficiency while ensuring minimal disruption to your business. Don’t get caught out by the BT switch-off, contact GRH Comms today.