Are you ready for the UK’s PSTN Switch Off 2025

What is PSTN?

PSTN stands for the Public Switched Telephone Network. This was originally made up of the traditional copper wire telephone system which was designed for analogue voice communication.

ISDN (Integrated Services Digital Network) was then introduced within the PSTN in the late 1980s, a digital version of the analogue phone line which allows the transfer of voice and data over PSTN copper lines.

What actually does PSTN switch off mean to my Business?

In 2017, Openreach announced that they are turning off the old analogue PSTN in 2025. The PSTN supports several products including ISDN lines which many businesses have, these could be ISDN2 or ISDN30 lines depending on the size of your business, and WLR (Wholesale Line Rental).

The important thing to understand is that it won’t just affect voice services, but also broadband services will require upgrading. Plus anything that connects to the PSTN such as alarm systems, EPOS and CCTV will also need upgrading.

Your PSTN line, or landline, will be switched off at the end of December 2025, along with all other fixed lines, which includes broadband, will no longer be available.

Openreach are confident that they will meet the deadline of withdrawing all products reliant on the PSTN by 2025. If businesses or consumers have not managed to switch over to a different telephony solution by then, they will be left without service.

What will replace my existing services?

VoIP is the main technology that will replace ISDN. VoIP stands for Voice over Internet Protocol and allows your telephone service to be delivered across the internet. As it only requires an internet connection to work, you will no longer need to have costly, old-fashioned analogue phone lines in your offices. With VoIP, you will benefit from better call quality, greater flexibility and a lot more features than ISDN lines.

In addition to VoIP, there is Session Initiation Protocol (SIP). SIP trunks enable you to use VoIP by connecting your phone system to the public phone network from an Internet Protocol (IP) system. SIP can connect to the majority of existing systems, which makes it a popular choice for those switching across to an internet-based phone solution.

Alternative Products to PSTN and ISDN

Openreach have introduced various broadband products which will replace the traditional broadband based on the PSTN service and are referred to as Single Order Broadband:

  • FTTP

Single Order GEA (SOGEA) and SOGFAST are new broadband packages which use the same technology as GEA FTTC (Fibre-to-the-Cabinet VDSL or GFAST (for Ultrafast speeds)) with the exception that they do not share the line with a WLR service (the PSTN network isn’t enabled for the line). SOGEA and SOGFAST offers the same data rates, performance, and VDSL technology as FTTC and GFAST, is available in the same geographic areas as FTTC/GFAST, and with the additional benefit of being a true all IP solution broadband service to meet the demands and reliance of today’s and future connectivity solutions.

What are the next Steps?

HFD Intelligent Technologies can support you in making the transition from PSTN to IP telephony and new broadband services. We offer a range of telephony and internet solutions to suit your business needs, from hosted phone systems, PSTN to VOIP Gateways, SIP trunking and IP broadband services.

Working with leading communication software providers means, we can provide solutions that are cost effective, scalable and delivered via our communications infrastructure. Our team of experts take the time to get to know your business and find the best solution for you, assisting you throughout the process, including the implementation of your solution. 

We also offer a full range of high speed, business-grade connectivity solutions from FTTP to lease lines.

For more information on our telephony and connectivity solutions, contact us.