BT are switching off in 2025
This is one of those things that’s you might read and think “that feels really far away”, but the BT switch off is going to affect everyone from business users to home users, and it’s important to at least be aware that you need to take action, to avoid getting caught out with no phones nearer the time if you leave it until the last minute when there will inevitably be a lot of other people also leaving it until the last minute too.
What is the BT Switch Off in 2025?
In a move to have a fully digital network in the UK, BT will be moving all of their customers to digital lines, rather than traditional analogue lines, which will all be switched off by Openreach in 2025.
The obvious thing to think about here are phones, but for businesses especially there might be other non-voice things you use that rely on traditional lines. These will require an upgrade to using the internet before Openreach throw the switch. This might include alarms, EPOS machines, CCTV, door entry systems and yes, for some, even fax machines.
You can learn more about BT plans for digital transformation here.
How will the BT switch off affect business phones?
The main thing we do want to talk about though is the voice side of things. While the items listed above are important, being able to communicate effectively is absolutely essential.
If your phones are based on the analogue system, then although you don’t need to panic and replace them right away – their days are sadly numbered. However, you can absolutely make the move to a cloud-based phones system. You may also see these referred to as ‘VoIP’, which stands for Voice over Internet Protocol, and is a fancy techy way of saying that they work over the internet.
We’ve written more about this kind of phone system here because although we’re humans and humans are programmed not to like change, especially when we feel forced into it, there’s so much good stuff that VoIP phones can do for businesses – once you switch you’ll probably wonder why you’ve not done it sooner.
What about broadband?
Most businesses have broadband running on the back of an analogue line, so will be affected by the switch. However recently it’s become possible to get broadband packages that don’t require a traditional line.
What do I need to do about the BT switch off?
First of all, don’t panic. Make a cup of tea, sit down, and take out a pen.
Then list all of the things you use that require an analogue line. You can then take this list to any good IT provider who will be aware of the upcoming changes and will be able to help you with the next steps.
What if I don’t know my PSTN from my elbow?
If you can’t do this because you have no idea what uses what, there’s still absolutely no need to panic or feel like you’ve failed a test. That’s what we’re here for! You can simply give us a call to discuss this, and we’ll arrange a time to come and see you, and conduct an audit of everything you use that currently requires an analogue (known as PSTN) line. We can then sit down and work out a plan detailing all of the next steps you need to take.
We’ll then carry out those steps in a timely manner, and get you all sorted before the rush of last-minute panic hits. Don’t bury your head in the sand and end up with no phones in 2025 while you wait for it to become available!