ISDN Switch Off: What You Need to Know
ISDN is a service that has been around for decades, but it is soon to be phased out. ISDN stands for Integrated Services Digital Network, and PSTN stands for Public Switched Telephone Network.
In September 2015, BT announced its intention to switch off both services by 2025. This means that businesses in the UK will need to find new ways of communicating with customers and suppliers if they are still using PSTN or ISDN2/30 telephone systems.
ISDN does not have any data transmission capabilities; it is a pure voice service. PSTN and ISDN rely on the telephone exchange to send information in both directions; this means that there are limitations with how much bandwidth can be allocated for each phone call connection.
The main advantage of using IP based technologies is that connections will be more reliable, and if bandwidth limitations are exceeded, it is easier to allocate more capacity.
IP based technologies can also carry data and voice information, which means that businesses will be able to use the internet or wifi networks for a wider range of tasks like sending faxes or using video conference tools.
What you need to do before the ISDN Switch Off:
If your business still uses PSTN or ISDN for voice calls, then it is important that you have an IT strategy in place as there will be changes. You will also need to discuss how their products and services are affected by this change with suppliers. At Teleproject UK, we are always happy to chat through your setup and needs and help you get the right solution for your business.
If you still rely on PSTN/ISDN technology for telephone services, then right now would be an excellent time to start looking into other ways of communicating with your customers and suppliers. At present, there are three options open to you in order to prepare:
Use Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services; this means making phone calls via your computer’s microphone instead of through physical hardware. VoIP is increasingly popular with businesses of all sizes and has many advantages, including the ability to make phone calls from anywhere in the world.
Sign up for a cloud-based telephony service; this gives you access to an offsite IP based voice network hosted by BT or one of its partners that will enable your business to continue using PSTN/ISDN until 2025.
Investigate ISDN alternatives such as SIP trunking (which uses internet protocol technology). However, this option may not be viable if bandwidth limitations are too high, so it would be wise to check before making any commitments.
How can Teleproject UK Help?
We can help by providing a first-class service for the replacement products. These are SIP Trunks, also know as SIP Channels and fully hosted telephony.
One of the key advantages of SIP Trunks is that they are cost-effective and tailored to suit your requirements. For example, the usage charges for voice calls are a lot cheaper than those charged by BT or other providers; we’ve seen companies save up to 60% on their monthly line rental!
We also offer an easy transition service that will work alongside our hardware partners to ensure you have everything needed for the switch off. This includes any PSTN services you may need, such as ‘caller display’ (CID) and calls diversion when ISDN switches off.
We provide this service, so nothing is stopping you from switching now!
However, you should note that if customers are still using ISDN in 2025, their service will be disconnected.
If you have recently invested in a new on-premise telephone system, then your current system may be, in fact, SIP compatible. This means that your ISDN channels can simply be replaced with the more cost-effective and feature-rich SIP Channels.
Benefits of VoIP Services over ISDN or PSTN
VoIP services are excellent because they offer several benefits over traditional methods like ISDN or PSTN, including:
- Enhanced reliability as there’s no chance for interruption due to power outages;
- Lower costs by combining voice and data on one network connection;
- Free long-distance service for all customers (excluding special calling features);
- Innovative call management tools with additional caller ID information available through your telephone system provider. This includes displaying an employee’s name before he/she picks up the call and blocking anonymous calls.
- Higher quality sound with less noise and echo;
- These new technologies more reliable as they can’t be hacked like traditional methods like ISDN.
- Cost-effective compared to older systems
If you want to know more about how we can help your business through the BT switch, give us a call on 0800 316 8605!
We’d be glad to discuss your requirements and answer any questions you may have.