The Digital Upgrade

Progress of BT shutdown: 4 months left!

May 5, 2023

By December 2025 all traditional landlines will be switched off in favour of digital services like VoIP instead. This sounds like a really long time away but in fact some measures are already taking place, making now the perfect time to switch.

What is the landline switch off?

BT’s Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN) and Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) are being gradually phased out over the next couple of years. It’s being called the Big Switch Off, and residential homes as well as businesses are affected.

With analogue phone lines being phased out, VoIP is rapidly becoming the go-to telecoms technology. It’s not new, having been around since the early 2000s, but the scope of what VoIP can offer in terms of call quality and features has moved on at pace.

VoIP stands for Voice over Internet Protocol. It allows calls to be made digitally over the internet instead of using a landline, which is often much cheaper too. With high-speed broadband accessible by more people than ever, the BT landline shutdown enables the ultimate digital transformation to take place.

Why is the Big Switch Off happening? 

The demand for landlines is decreasing fast, thanks mainly to the huge rise in fibre broadband uptake. Telecoms companies have made it clear over the years that the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) equipment is not only costly to run, but doesn’t offer the quality people now expect. Traditional landlines are also known for being unreliable, and can be affected by even the smallest changes in weather for example.

There are huge benefits for businesses of switching to VoIP, not least because of the great range of additional business-friendly VoIP features. These include call analytics data, internal calling, voice mail, hold music, video calling and much more. You can also access your system from any internet-connected device, including your laptop, mobile or tablet, as well as your VoIP phone or headset if you choose to have one. This all gives fantastic flexibility for you and your team to work remotely.

So what’s the latest on the landline shutdown?

From the 5th September 2023 BT Openreach will stop selling Wholesale Line Rental (WLR) across the UK. WLR is made up of PSTN, ISDN2, ISDN30 and includes Classic. It’s also worth bearing in mind that withdrawal will also apply to any broadband product (SMPF or FTTC) associated with a WLR PSTN line. So Communications Providers (CPs) will no longer be able to order WLR anywhere in the UK if there is an All IP alternative product available (a limited number of order journeys will still be possible). You can find out more about stop sell on the Openreach website.

Looking to find out more about the landline shutdown?

It can all seem a little daunting, so we’ve put together a range of articles about the landline switch-off, including:

Sign up for a free 7-day VoIP trial

Don’t get caught out by the landline shutdown!

If your business still hasn’t made the jump to VoIP, why not start a free trial with bOnline? There’s no obligation and it’s the perfect way to try out all the handy features on offer. Furthermore, if you do decide to upgrade to one of our monthly low cost packages, it’s easy to do via your online dashboard.

We do everything for you, so you don’t need any kind of technical knowledge yourself. Plus it’s all done remotely, so it doesn’t matter where in the UK you are - with no downtime. In fact, we can usually set everything up for you within 24-48 hours, and you can even keep your business number if you want to.

Find out more about VoIP with bOnline and get signed up today or call our team for further advice on 0208 125 3205.


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