What is happening?

BT Openreach has announced it will be switching off its PSTN and ISDN networks in 2025 in favour of IP cloud services. Both the PSTN and ISDN are ageing networks and will be end of life by the end of 2025.

What are ISDN & PSTN?

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The Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) is the familiar landline telephone system originally built for analogue voice communication. It became the most reliable method of making voice calls and the main carrier for internet activity across the world. It was enhanced by the Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN), which allowed the digital transmission of voice, video and other services simultaneously, using the traditional PSTN network.

Why are they being phased out?

In short, these legacy systems are now deemed to be out of date, as are the associated maintenance and running costs. Despite having been radically updated over the decades since their inception, these lines are essentially the same in setup and design as the original telephone lines of the 1800s. Just as many other fields of technology are advancing at light speed around us, it makes sense that our national telecoms infrastructure is also updated.

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What are SIP & VoIP?

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Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) is a protocol used in Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), that allows users to make voice and video calls on a global scale using computer and mobile devices with an internet connection. The biggest and most noticeable difference for businesses, between the traditional ISDN network and the next generation SIP networks, is the flexibility of not being tied down to a fixed line at a fixed location; allowing you to mobilise your business communications. These VoIP communication systems are also often referred to as Cloud-based telephony or Unified Communications systems.

Advantages of VoIP:

  • Scalability

    VoIP technology does not rely on the physical PSTN network, which gives businesses the ability to upscale at low cost and without any hassle. You can increase the number of available virtual telephone lines in no time with VoIP, allowing you to maximise your profits in no time!

  • Lower communication costs

    In almost all cases, adopting VoIP technologies, will drive down the cost of communicating for your business; from the reduction of capital investment and hardware maintenance cost, to the cheaper call rates and loss of physical telephone line rental.

  • Failover / Fault Tolerance and Security

    A software-based, VoIP solution means more resilient at almost every level. Your telephone system is no longer a physical box on the wall in your office, prone to hardware failure and physical damage, but a virtual system, potentially running in the Cloud, with disaster recovery built in by design; a system that can be backed up, restored and redeployed in minutes if necessary. When it comes to security, VoIP systems are also capable of encrypting conversations, deterring hackers from listening to voice calls over the IP Network.

  • Unified Communications to Boost Productivity

    A software-based, VoIP solution or Unified Communications (UC) platform is capable of so much more than a traditional telephone system; everything from voice and video communications, call conferencing and text based chat, to real-time collaborative working, screen sharing, and online presentations. All of this on a single platform that integrates into your existing email systems, CRM systems and data network, providing powerful access to data quickly, easily and organisation-wide, resulting in better collaboration, increased productivity and improved business agility.

  • Mobility

    Approximately 50% of employees around the world work remotely at least once per week, and 68% work remotely at least once per month. This astounding rise in remote workers, and the increase in companies using hot desking, means that employees need to be able to communicate using variety of devices and from wherever they happen to be working.

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