UK’s PSTN Network to be Switched Off in 2025

BT are planning to move all customers still on the old analogue public switched telephone network (PSTN) to the digital alternative. This means that not only your landline at home (if you still have one) will be cut off, but also anything you use within business use that relies on PSTN must be updated before the end of 2025.

This is an understandable move – PSTN based devices just can’t keep up with the demands of modern communication. Some countries, such as the Netherlands and Estonia, have already done away with PSTN. Others are ahead of us in their plans, like Germany and Japan. It just makes sense to upgrade to the better system.

What Does This Mean for You?

While much communication has already migrated to digital, it’s definitely possible that your business still has a few devices that rely on PSTN. This isn’t just landline phones, either – a number of devices you might not expect still need a phoneline connection, such as:

  • Alarms
  • POS Machines
  • CCTV systems
  • Door entry systems
  • Fax machines
  • And more…

In short, anything connected to your phonelines will be affected.

While 2025 feels a ways off right now, it is very important for businesses to update their technology to an IP (Internet Protocol) before this service ends. Once it’s gone, it’s gone, and if you have anything left that relies on PSTN it won’t work anymore.

Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL) is a type of broadband conection that relies on a PSTN phoneline. It uses pre-existing copper cabling to deliver broadband connections. Many homes and small businesses still use ADSL due to its cost effectiveness and ease of installation.

Fibre to the Cabinet (FTTC) broadband works similarly to ADSL. The main difference is that the cables connecting the cabinet to the exchange or distribution point are fibre optic instead of copper.

However, since PTSN is being switched off, businesses who use these services will have no choice but to swap to a digital broadband provider – both ADSL and FTTC will stop working once the analogue phonelines go down.

So, what are the alternatives?

SOGEA

Single Order Generic Ethernet Access (SOGEA) is a type of broadband access that combines copper cabling and fibre technology. It allows both homes and businesses to buy a broadband connection without a phoneline.

SOGEA is a kind of FTTC connection, with a key difference. A SOGEA connection does not require or include a phoneline – instead of a landline, a cable dedicated to providing broadband is installed from the cabinet to the consumer.

SOGEA is an ideal choice if you are looking to update your broadband connection, for a number of reasons. For example:

  • Internet speeds comparable to (if not faster than) an FTTC connection
  • Easy & cheap installation
  • Only one service provider – if something goes wrong, you only need to contact one supplier.
  • Ability to keep pre-existing telephone numbers
FTTP

Fibre to the premises (FTTP) is the fasted kind of broadband connection available. Unlike the previous lines, FTTP uses end-to-end fibre optic cables. This means that there are no copper cables slowing down the connection. From the source to the customer, all cabling used is fibre optic.

An FTTP connection has by far the fastest internet speed you could get. It isn’t available throught the entirety of the UK, though coverage is increasing.

While on the surface this sounds like the best choice, FTTP isn’t necessarily what your business needs. There’s no point in shelling out for ultrafast full fibre broadband if your needs could be met with a cheaper, easier to install SOGEA package. You’ll want the broadband package that suits your needs.

What If I Need to Make Calls?

If you’re still using landline voice services to make and recieve calls, you will have to update your systems before the PSTN shut off. Thankfully, there are solutions for this.

Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) is the leading tech allowing users to make and recieve calls over the internet – no landline required. VoIP works across many devices – smartphones, computers, laptops, tablets, etc. – and unlimited nationwide calling is typically included in the standard flat monthly fee.

So don’t worry about losing your access to voice services when you update. You’ve got plently of options.

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