The gradual deactivation of ISDN (Integrated Services Digital Network) and PSTN (Public Switched Telephone Network) systems is getting ever closer to the final switch off.
In 2020, BT announced they were no longer accepting new orders of these circuits or carrying out any upgrades to existing networks. This kicked off their five year phase-out working towards the long-term goal of completely switching off ISDN and PSTN by 2025.
Now, there are only three years left before the total switch off. If your business is reliant on ISDN and hasn’t already migrated to an alternative solution, you need to get thinking fast!
But don’t panic, here is all the information you need to make the swap.
What is ISDN & PSTN?
ISDN allows you to make phone calls and video calls through digital transmission using PSTN.
When it was first launched, ISDN was the fastest service available and considered the highest standard of digital connections. Many businesses and organizations used ISDN service for both Internet access and network connections between locations in the 1990’s and early 2000’s.
However, over the years as alternative technology has advanced, ISDN has become increasingly outdated.
Why is the ISDN switch off happening?
Put simply, these networks are no longer a viable option for BT. The outdated systems are draining vast money and time but don’t offer anything in return. Connectivity has advanced to such an extent that traditional ISDN and PSTN circuits are no match for modern alternative solutions that are becoming more and more popular each day.
When there are faster, more agile and less costly systems available why would you want to stick to traditional phone lines?
What are the alternatives?
The top alternatives for business requirements are the IP technology based solutions: VoIP and SIP.
The session initiation protocol (SIP), forms the foundation of all types of internet communication sessions. It establishes sessions, manages signalling, and terminates the connection when the sessions end. It’s mostly used for making phone calls over the internet but it can also be used for video conference calls and instant messaging.
VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) solutions are cloud based systems and are used to enable voice calls and messages over LANs or the internet, rather than traditional analogue lines.
A VoIP system works by taking your analogue voice signals, converting them into digital signals, then sending them as data over your broadband line. You can make VoIP calls from several devices, such as a mobile, tablet or your desktop.
What are the key benefits of VoIP services & SIP solutions?
- Lower costs – IP solutions can save you money in all sorts of places. When using VoIP, you get cheaper calls than when using PSTN and you don’t need to fork out for copper lines because both voice and data are allowed on the same channel. Plus, it’s also cost effective as VoIP alleviates ongoing expenses such as taxes and repair fees.
- Accessibility –You can make calls from anywhere. Ever since the beginning of the pandemic in 2020, remote working has become an absolute necessity for business continuity around the globe. IP solutions enable your employees to stay connected even if they aren’t in office, offering a greater level of flexibility than an ISDN phone service ever has.
- Faster installation – No need to wait around for an engineer to install physical lines as everything works over your internet connectivity.
- Scalability– You can add VoIP users & handsets as your business grows without having to purchase additional business infrastructure such as hardware or lines. Therefore, it’s ideal for a growing business that’s looking to expand in the near future.
- Reliability – Fibre lines can be installed for back up and failover, helping to relieve worries about staying connected during an outage and ensure maximum business continuity.
- Audio quality – As long as a stable internet connection is in place, you’ll get clearer call quality when using IP solutions to support your business calls.
Switching your business away from ISDN and PSTN shouldn’t just be a priority because BT are deactivating the network, it should be a priority because of the benefits VoIP and SIP can offer your business.
Our VoIP System
HVoice is our cost effective, scalable, cloud based phone solution with 5000 inclusive minutes to UK landlines and mobiles.
Fully cloud based, it offers the scalability and functionality that has become expected from a modern phone system, but with the included benefits of a great quality service and 5000 minutes! Each user will have 5000 minutes per month to use and these minutes can be pooled together across all the users in your business.
Each user license comes with over 30 features as standard and many more advanced features available for you to add. You don’t need any hardware (except a VoIP phone of course) as the system operates with complete PBX functionality just without the expensive upfront hardware costs.
HVoice can be tailored to your business requirements, with handsets available on a monthly basis with our three year packages or options to purchase the handset in full at the beginning of your term.
Click here to see all available features.
Ready to make the switch?
Contact us now if you are interested in migrating to an IP based solution.
We are more than happy to discuss your options with you and answer any questions you have.
If you need a bespoke solution for your telephone service or business broadband to support your business activity, we can tailor our HVoice solution to your business’ exact needs. Get in touch now!
As of 2020, ISDN lines are no longer available to buy. Analogue phone lines are still in use but are being slowly phased out and will be rendered completely redundant in 2025 when ISDN is completely switched off.
VoIP and SIP solutions will replace the traditional phone network as the primary solution for office phone systems. This is part of the wider digital transformation happening as modern technology continues to develop.
Yes, landlines are part of the PSTN. They are one and the same.
If you currently have a landline phone at your property and want to continue having a ‘home’ phone service, you will need to switch to a digital solution before 2025 when the switch off happens.