BUSINESSES which make the move to digital now ahead of the 2025 switch off of the UK’s landline phone network can take advantage of cost savings and better connectivity.
That’s the message from Colin Hewitt, an IT expert who works closely with businesses making the transition.
With the UK’s traditional analogue phone network due to move to an all-digital system in less than two years, he says businesses need to ensure they are ready for the changes ahead.
Colin, who is a BT Product Specialist with Integrity IT Solutions, said: “Effectively the switch over means that calls will be routed over a cloud-based phone system, also known as Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), which is faster, more reliable and more cost effective for users than the old analogue system.
“The change is taking place to ensure that the UK’s communication network meets the demands of the 21st century. The way we live and work has changed dramatically over the past two decades – and we need a network which will meet and exceed our expectations.
“For businesses, this means taking steps sooner rather than later to ensure they are prepared. If an office, factory or workplace currently relies on a traditional landline connection then they should be looking at digital phone and broadband alternatives.
“The benefits to moving to a digital phone system can be instant, including reduced ongoing costs, easier maintenance, more flexibility and better security. Using a cloud-based system will also help teams operate more effectively through better reliability, convenience and speed.”
Colin said it was important that businesses identify any devices or services which currently rely on the analogue network such as door entry systems, lifts, smoke and security alarms.
The existing copper PSTN (Public Switched Telephone Network) and ISDN (Integrated Services Digital Network) network will be switched off by December 31, 2025.
The process of moving to an all-digital system has already begun, with some areas transferred, or in the process of being transferred. Two test sites in Salisbury in Wiltshire and Mildenhall in Suffolk are due to have analogue services withdrawn in October this year.
And as part of the transition, Openreach will stop providing new analogue phone lines to UK customers from September.
The 2025 switch off covers the whole of the UK, including rural areas where broadband is not currently available. As part of the process, these areas will be upgraded or services accessed via alternatives such as 5G solutions.
As an Authorised partner of BT, Integrity IT Solutions works with businesses and organisations across the North of England and south-west Scotland to support the transition to digital. To find out more, call 01228 594692 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Integrity IT Solutions is based at Annan Business Park Way, Annan, and Rosehill Industrial Estate, Carlisle, and is part of the Eco Group of businesses. It offers a range of IT and comms solutions including IT support, cloud migration projects, server hardware, WiFi installation and hosted telephony services.