November 10, 2019 4:13 pm
In 2015, BT announced their decision to switch off ISDN and PSTN services completely by 2025 meaning that all ISDN and PSTN lines were to be deactivated and no longer of use to your business by 2025. They also stated that from 2020, you would no longer be able to place any orders for these services.
So, telecommunications technology is now moving into a different era of online capability, but what impact does that mean for your business?
What’s the impact for my business?
The decision by BT to stop using ISDN and PSTN is based on cost savings and an increase of functionality. So, there’s plenty of benefits.
If you are a smaller business then you may well be affected, particularly those with fax and landline telephones. We estimate that this equates to 2 million business potentially affected by this decision. If you own a small business, then you will need to start making plans for alternative solutions for your data transmission in order to maintain your communications systems.
Why have BT made this decision to eliminate ISDN & PSTN?
ISDN (Integrated Service Digital Network) and PSTN began in 1986. It’s basically a circuit-switched telephone network system where voice and data are delivered over digital lines.
When it launched, ISDN technology was progressive and supported the transference of the outdated landline tech to be digital and boasted the fastest internet connection.
PSTN (Public Switch Phone Network) is the old classic Analogue system whereby information was transmitted through copper lines.
With the emergence of new broadband internet access like WAN and DSL, ISDN and PSTN is outdated, and although BT has invested in upgrading this infrastructure, its network remains unchanged.
What is ISDN being replaced with?
BT have made considerable investments in VoIP (Voice Over IP) which allows them to converge all their services to IP meaning they can meet the demands of businesses into the future better.
Many larger businesses have made the change to VoIP as it’s not run on copper lines-these will now be redundant-all you need is an Internet connection!
What are the benefits of VoIP?
- Cost benefits: your business will see a reduction to line rental as fewer physical lines will be required.
- Fixable & Scalable:If your business has a cloud based telephone system paired with a SIP line, VoIP will allow for easy transference of calls between offices and locations and you will be able to use your work line anywhere in the country, plus seeing who in your teams are available to make or receive calls!
- New lines quicker:VoIP allows for provision of new lines faster than ever before
How does my business prepare for the BT Switch off?
2025 is when officially the network will be switch off and reductant. So, you have time to prepare, but don’t delay. If your phone contract is up for renewal, then now would be the time to switchover and start exploring the VoIP options.
Consider these actions:
- Spec out what your business needs
- Gather options from communications specialists
- Is your internet connection currently good enough to support VoIP? (Whilst VoIP doesn’t use much data-not even as much as a video), you will still need the bandwidth to deliver the Voice over the IP system on top of everything else your internet is used for.
Bandwidth does depend on your business needs, and 5Mbps down and 2Mbps up is really the minimum of a small office so really you should seek advice from Communication specialists to understand your business needs and the quality of service you will need. It’s essential that you get the right spec as you would not want an intermittent service with poor audio for your business!
Your phone system may already support VoIP, if not, now may be the time to consider changing over your entire phone system and think about a cloud based telephony service which would allow you to manage your phone system via an on line control panel hosted in the cloud.
The cost benefits of VoIP are undeniable in terms of calls and line rentals which will allow your business to increase your functionality and save on overall telecoms costs.
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This post was written by Innermedia Ltd