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The big UK network switch-off in 2025 – Do you need to act?

Heard about the UK network switch-off and want to know what’s happening, when, whether it applies to your business and the next steps? Watch our video for all the answers.

What is the UK network switch-off and what is actually happening?

The UK network switch-off means that traditional single phone lines and ISDN2 & 30 lines will no longer be available in the UK, people will need to switch to newer digital communication methods like cloud telephony for their phone services.

When is this happening?

The full switch-off is set to complete by the end of 2025, though some exchanges are closing as early as September 2024.

How does it affect my business?

If a business hasn’t made the necessary changes before the UK network switch-off, they may face disruptions in their communication services. Here are some potential consequences: 

  • Loss of phone services - Traditional phone lines will no longer be available, leading to a loss of voice communication, if alternatives are not in place 
  • Internet interruption - Some businesses use broadband delivered over phone lines for internet connectivity, failure to transition to alternative internet services could result in a loss of internet access 
  • Business disruption - Communication is crucial for business operations, failing to adapt to the new technology could disrupt internal and external communication, impacting customer service, collaboration and productivity 
  • Missed opportunities - Businesses may miss out on the benefits of modern communication technologies, such as; cost savings, scalability and enhanced features offered by cloud telephony and other digital services 
  • Competitive disadvantage - Companies that do not adapt to the UK network switch-off may find themselves at a disadvantage compared to competitors that have embraced newer more efficient technologies 
  • Additional costs - Delaying the transition may lead to rushed decisions, and potentially higher costs for implementing new systems and services 

To avoid these consequences, businesses should plan and execute a smooth transition to modern communication technologies well before the UK network switch-off date. This typically involves working with telecommunication providers and IT professionals to ensure a seamless migration.

Does this apply to my business?

Yes it does, there’s no avoiding this. Every single ISDN2/30 and single line in the UK will be switched off by the end of 2025, and if you’ve not made alternative arrangements, like moving your business comms to a cloud hosted system, your business will lose the ability to make and receive calls. It’s that simple. 

If you don’t know what to do, don’t panic. You still have plenty of time to sort it out, but we wouldn’t suggest sitting on it for too long.

How can my business prepare for the UK network switch-off?

To prepare for the UK network switch-off, your business should consider taking the following 5 key steps:

  1. Assessment and planning - Conduct a thorough assessment of your current communication infrastructure to identify all ISDN and analogue lines and services in use. Develop a comprehensive migration plan that outlines what needs to be replaced or upgraded, and the timeline for these changes 
  2. Choose alternative technologies - Evaluate and select alternative communication technologies, such as; cloud based phone systems that align with your business needs and phone budget. Determine whether you want to maintain on-premises equipment and move to the cloud or opt for a hybrid solution 
  3. Vendor selection - Research and choose reliable telecommunication providers. Consider factors like; pricing, reliability, scalability, and customer support when selecting a provider 
  4. Implementation and testing - Execute the migration plan systematically, ensuring minimum disruption to your business operations. Test the new communications system extensively to resolve any issues before the UK ISDN switch-off date 
  5. Employee training and communication - Provide training to employees on how to use the new communication tools and systems effectively. You should communicate the upcoming changes to all relevant stakeholders, including employees, customers and suppliers to manage expectations and reduce confusion. Additionally, it’s crucial to stay informed about updates and changes related to the UK ISDN switch-off and adapt your plan accordingly. Engaging with experts or consultants in telecommunications can also be beneficial to ensure a successful transition

How long will all this take?

Well, how long is a piece of string? We can have your new comms system up and running in just a couple of days, in ideal conditions ,of course. In truth, migrating an existing and complex phone system can take some time, so it's best to start this project sooner rather than later, as it can take a couple of months to complete. But don’t worry our trained specialists will help you from beginning to end, they will take you through it step by step, telling you everything you need to do, provide and think about.

Is this going to cost a lot of money?

Actually, it’s cheaper than what you’re using now. There is no entry cost, no expensive initial hardware to purchase, and you only pay for what you use or need. In terms of your budget, there is no capital expenditure and it becomes an operational cost.

We hope the above is useful, and if a quick 15 minute chat about your particular situation might be helpful drop me a note at andy@vivocomms.co.uk - happy to help!

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