A clear guide on BT network shutdown for SMEs

 As you may have heard BT Openreach have announced they will be switching off their existing PSTN and ISDN network by 2025 and switching to a single IP network. This means if your business relies on the traditional ISDN network you will need to make arrangements to move to another solution. 2025 may seem like a fair distance away, however with so many lines needing to be migrated you shouldn’t risk your business communications by leaving it to the last minute. In this article we will give you the facts about the ISDN shut down and discuss what solutions you should migrate to next.


What is PSTN?

“The public switched telephone network (PSTN) is the aggregate of the world’s circuit-switched telephone networks that are operated by national, regional, or local telephony operators, providing infrastructure and services for public telecommunication” Analogue voice data is sent over a circuit-switched phone line made up of copper wires which is owned and operated by your phone provider.


What is ISDN?

“Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN) is a set of communication standards for simultaneous digital transmission of voice, video, data, and other network services over the traditional circuits of the public switched telephone network”


When is the ISDN shutdown?

BT’s plan is to have completely switched off the ISDN network by 2025. They will start to put pressure on organisations to make the transition from 2020, although it is greatly encouraged that any business needing to move to a new solution starts the process now.


What services should I migrate to next?

The recent investment in the UK communications network has made the new fibre infrastructure widely available and affordable to small businesses. This means IP based solution such as VoIP and SIP are the top alternatives for businesses.


What is VoIP?

VoIP is a cloud-based telephony solution which moves your whole phone system online so all your calls are sent over your internet connection. This digital cloud-based phone system offers a wide range of additional features such as call recording, receiving voicemails via email, call queuing and unified communications – being able to access the system on multiple devices such as a mobile and desktop.


As previously stated, we advise against leaving it near the deadline before moving to VoIP. If you leave it to the last minute to switch, you’ll be risking your business communications and also putting your business at a competitive disadvantage. This is because your business will be missing out on all of the beneficial features of VoIP. Here are just a few business enhancing features that VoIP will provide your business.


What business benefits does VoIP provide?

  • Increased Flexibility – VoIP systems allow for increased flexibility. Ina smaller business the role of a staff member may vary daily, this may mean that their working location changes too. Some days they may need to be office based and the next day they may need to travel or work remotely. A hosted solution allows you to work professionally wherever you may be.


  • Feature Rich – A VoIP system is full of feature that are simply inaccessible with traditional phone lines. One area to highlight particularly is it’s conferencing and meeting capabilities. This means that even a small business can host international meeting and conferences with ease. For most companies, all they need is hardware with a microphone, speaker and webcam capabilities. Other great features of VoIP which prove to be critical to businesses include CRM integration, conference rooms, time of day routing, hunt groups, auto attendants and a lot more.


  • Cost Effective – Put simply, moving to a hosted solution is cost effective and can save your business money regardless on the size. This is because the installation and maintenance costs can be kept minimal. A hosted solution also means that you avoid paying costly traditional phone line bills. This is because you place calls over competitively priced internet connectivity instead.


Moving to VoIP is an important decision as it means that you will be future proofing your communication. You may not be aware but ISDN phone lines will be ceasing as of 2025. This may seem like a long way away however we urge you to start considering a hosted solution now to ensure that you have time to find a solution that works best for your business. Want to find out more about what VoIP can offer you? We are on hand to talk and answer any questions that you may have.

Contact Us

 With many VoIP solutions available, we suggest that you contact us for more information or advice. We’re happy to discuss our VoIP solutions with you.  You can contact us using the email form below or by calling us on 08000 11 64 34.

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