In case you missed it in 2015 BT announced that they will be switching off the PSTN and ISDN networks by the year 2025. From this customers are going to be migrated to a single IP core network that will eventually retire and replace all legacy networks and platforms.
PSTN and ISDN what exactly are they and what is the difference?
ISDN or Integrated Services Digital Network pushes both voice and date through digital lines, this allows you to video conference, transfer data and have direct dials ins. Another advantage of having ISDN lines is that they provide multiple channels per line, which would allow you to make simultaneous phone calls on one line.
PSTN, Public Switched Telephone Network or sometimes also known as (POTS) Plain Old Telephone Service are different to ISDN's as they only transfer analogue voice data through their lines. This is generally owned and operated by your phone network.
So what is the alternative and future?
Scrapping the ISDN and PSTN, which are the expensive bits of your telephone bill as they come under line rental, gives you one clear solution VoIP. VoIP which stands for Voice over IP works by transmitting your voice data over a internet connection. VoIP has been around for a long time and many businesses have been successfully using it for many years, this has already led to the steady decline in take up of ISDN and PSTN lines. VoIP is popular as it is a very cost effective way of managing telephony within a business.
If your business relies on one of the 3.2 million ISDN lines in the UK, here is what you need to know about the switch off of the ISDN and PSTN lines.
What to do next
We would recommend that your business moves to VoIP in the near future, ISDN is now just seen as a legacy platform which means investment and maintenance will slow in the coming years. This could result in current infrastructure and the standard of current networks suffering ending in poor telephone service.
In four years time in 2020 five years before the shut off of ISDN and PSTN lines, businesses will not be able to buy systems that support these networks, with this in mind this is we are recommending to switch to VoIP rather than upgrade current systems.
When 2025 rolls in BT plan to have all customers migrated to an IP network making VoIP the perfect solution for your business now.