The Big Switch Off is coming, but what exactly is this and what does it mean for your business?

Openreach are upgrading local telephone exchanges across the UK and moving across to a full-fibre network. As a result, ‘The Big Switch-Off’ is the process of the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) and Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN) being switched off following a gradual phase out. This will be fully completed by 2025.

The PSTN utilises legacy infrastructure that is aging and becoming more difficult to maintain. In short, these legacy systems are now deemed out of date, hence why the Big Switch-Off has begun.

What is PSTN and ISDN?

PSTN is the infrastructure behind the traditional telephone lines used in the UK. It became the most reliable method of making voice calls and the main carrier for internet activity across the world. ISDN allows the digital transmission of voice and other services simultaneously, using the traditional PSTN network.

How does this affect my business and when do I need to act?

2025 seems a long way off, but from now businesses won’t be able to buy any existing type of phone line or copper-based broadband connection. By 2025, every traditional phone line and broadband connection will need to be upgraded to services that use internet protocol (IP) across a fibre-based network. It is now important that your business moves as soon as possible to an alternative service to future-proof itself. You will need to review your existing technology and upgrade any legacy services to new digital IP technology.

What will the replacement products be?

Traditional phone systems will be replaced by Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP). For alternate data services, full fibre broadband solutions and single order variants such as SOGEA and SOTAP will replace FTTC and ADSL connections.

We can help you make the switch and plan for the future by working with you to choose the right cost-effective solution that allows you to scale your business whilst supporting you with remote and hybrid working.

We can assist by providing you with different alternatives such as:

  • VoIP – A cloud-based phone system for your business
  • PhoneLine+ – A simple phone line replacement service
  • SIP Trunks – A cost-effective alternative to ISDN for voice calls
  • Ethernet Leased Lines – High capacity and performance. Guaranteed bandwidth.
  • SoGEA – Simple business broadband with no need for a phone line
  • FTTP – Faster and more reliable internet connection

For more information about the Big Switch Off or to talk to us about migrating your business over to an alternative solution, please contact us or call us on 0330 400 4455.

You can also find out more by reading our FTTP Exchange Upgrade & Stop Sell Guidance document: