In 2025, Openreach will officially turn off the analogue Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) in favour of a fully digital network. From this point onwards, every phone line in the UK will be digital and route calls over Internet Protocol (IP) as opposed to the traditional PSTN.
What to Consider
This change will apply to all phone lines, whether their use be commercial or domestic. It’s not just your telephony services you need to consider when it comes to the effects of the switch to IP, but all of your non-voice services that may be connected to PSTN lines as well – this could include alarms, EPOS machines, door entry systems, CCTV, faxes and more.
PSTN has acted as the backbone of UK telephony for years, but huge changes in technology, such as smartphones, the cloud, Zoom, IoT (Internet of Things) and so on, cannot be ignored. The PSTN has increasingly faced struggles in keeping up with the demands of modern communications; as more people switch to mobile and internet communications, their demands and expectations begin to shift in a way which the traditional PSTN simply cannot accommodate.
Is it Just in the UK?
The switch to IP is taking place at a very quick rate, with phone companies all over the world making the switch from analogue to digital. Germany, Japan, and Sweden will be making the shift ahead of the UK’s 2025 deadline, whilst Estonia and The Netherlands have aleady switched off their PSTN networks.
Why Prepare Now?
2025 may seem a long way away, but it’s important to start preparing now as there will be much to consider along the way. Remember – it’s not just your telephony that could be affected, but anything and everything that’s connected to your phone lines.
A Positive Step
Throughout the UK, many organisations have already embraced the “all-digital” model, moving their communications to the cloud, making calls over VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) and embracing video conferencing, especially over the last 18 months. The move to IP isn’t just one that your organisation should be making because you are being forced to, but because it is a genuine positive step for your operations – put simply, digital communications are pretty much universally considered to be better. Even at the most basic level, you’ll be able to make and take calls on any device, from wherever you are, from the same number. You can link your business applications and systems with video chat, calls and collaboration to communicate and work more closely with users and colleagues alike. Furthermore, with everything in the cloud, you’ll be able to access systems from anywhere, working from wherever you want, which appears to be favoured by many as workers advocate for the continuation of remote-working post-Covid. This is not to mention the fact that IP can minimise operational costs in a way which traditional analogue exchange lines cannot.
Time to Switch
For the reasons mentioned above, now is the time to begin the move to Internet Protocol, not just in order to prepare for the PSTN’s end of life in plenty of time, but to start receiving the huge benefits that come with IP as soon as possible.
Consulting a Telephony Expert
To ensure that your move to IP is as smooth and undisruptive as possible, and that nothing gets missed, you might want to get help from a telephony expert. This is where 4C Strategies comes in; our team of experts has over two decades of experience assisting organisations in the health care, education and local government sectors and is uniquely positioned to aid your organisation in the move to IP.
To find out more, get in touch today on 01858 438938, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.