Only one in five businesses is fully aware that they will have to swap to fully digital networks when the traditional phone landline service stops in 2025.
A survey by B2B telecom service provider National Business Communications reveals that 59.7 per cent of respondents had no idea that the analogue public switched telephone network (PSTN) and Integrated Services Digital Networks (ISDN) would stop in 2025, and that all UK phone lines would have to be digital, routing all calls over Internet Protocol (IP).
The survey questioned 72 facilities managers, office managers, building managers, business owners, directors and HR managers. It indicates that although the Covid-19 pandemic had prompted businesses to use different communication methods such as Microsoft teams and Zoom, 69.5 per cent of UK businesses were still using landlines.
The survey also reveals that mobile phones and Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) were the main alternatives businesses said they would use to make calls without landlines. It found that 86.2 per cent said they would make calls via mobiles phones, while 62.5 per cent said they would use VoIP. Around 4 per cent of respondents said they are not yet sure what they would use.
National Business Communications said that businesses must begin thinking about switching to cloud-based technologies now, and plan migration to a single IP core network, replacing all legacy networks to create a fully digital network
“Businesses need to start preparing for the switch-off now,” said John Griffiths, chairman of National Business Communications. “We anticipate a hold-up in 2025 due to unprepared businesses, which may mean the industry won’t be able to keep up with the number of last-minute orders, possibly leaving businesses without a service.”
The ‘Big Switch Off’ could also affect non-voice services such as CCTV, alarms, faxes, EPOS machines and door-entry systems, said National Business Communications.
Griffiths added: “Although this may sound scary to businesses who still depend on landlines, there are alternatives such as VoIP and the transition can be made smoothly.”
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