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BT to switch off ISDN Network by 2025

Is your business depending on ISDN?

BT have announced that they are switching off their ISDN network, taking many telephone services throughout the UK offline. In layman's terms, if you are using a Private Automatic Branch Exchange (PABX) System, it will be connected to the telephone network using an ISDN line. 


Let's start by differentiating between PTSN and ISDN products. PSTN transmits voice calls using copper cables and the system hasn't changed for many years. In other words, it's an antiquated system.


ISDN however was introduced in the 1980s in order to provide voice and data on one digital line.  These days, ISDN’s primary use is to connect PABX systems. This is because the line can be subdivided into channels, each one effectively acting as a separate telephone line allowing multiple calls to be made. The problem with ISDN is that is if often expensive and if you need to extend your call capacity it can often mean adding additional lines that incur additional costs. Again, it's an antiquated system hence why BT are switching off. 


But despite being a well-established and reliable service, the widespread rollout of fibre optic services means many of ISDN’s advantages have GONE. With Fibre being the future, let's look at the options. 

Option 1: No telephone systems (not really a successful tactic to success)

Option 2: Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP)

Due to the rise of internet avaliability with high speed connection, it's become possible to make phone calls over the internet, so instead of paying per call, you pay a flat rate for a line. In other words, it's cheaper so why pay for an antiquated ineffective ISDN service. 


This is because VoIP solutions remove the expensive requirement of dedicated lines for your company's voice traffic and with many companies gaining competitive advantage by switching early, why wait? The more versatile system allows users to log in wherever a stable internet connection exists; this makes working from home a viable option for employees. Win-Win!  

VoIP also integrates with mobiles and with computer systems in a unified communications (UC) strategy that allows for solutions such as hot desking to operate successfully. Growing when you need too is easier than ever thought possible, because when you want to add more capacity you no longer need to install an extra line to do so. You just add a telephone or two.

And finally, VoIP is a more cost-effective solution; not only do you mitigate the need for expensive line rental but overall call costs are lower too. So, in layman's terms: it's cheaper, it's future proof and it's more efficient.  

So how do you switch today?

So, you're planning to move to an IP system, what's the catch?  There are numerous things to take into consideration.

1. Is your existing PABX system, compatible with IP? Well it depends on the age of your products. If in doubt, give us a call or send us an email, for a no obligation consultation.

2. Are your needs more suitable for a cloud-based system or an on-site in-house system? This is where you can really save substantially on costs, by knowing what you want and more importantly, what you don't need. We don't complicate things; we listen and offer bespoke options to suit your needs within your budget. 

3. Is your existing internet connection suitable for the new requirements? We'd always recommend that, regardless of the size of your premises, that fiber connection if possible is the solution because that is where the national future will be. This saves changing in the future with more costs. Size of premises will come into account, when bandwidth requirements are considered. Larger the office, the greater the bandwidth needed. Simply put, this causes a 'bottleneck' problem. Broadband = asynchronous which means uploading data is more constrained than downloading. It also suffers from what is called contention, because the connection is shared with other users once it leaves your premises, meaning you get significantly less bandwidth at peak times. Think streaming Netflix at peak times at home compared to at 1AM.

4. Do you need to upgrade to an Ethernet-based option? An option that provides the benefits of broadband without the drawback, due to the fact that is a fully synchronous connection, upload and download are at the same speed, there is zero contention. This means the bandwidth is solely for you so you can be as data greedy as you need.

5. Which provider do you SWITCH to? UCall Telecom prides itself on service. We love what we do but more importantly we understand that the bottom line is key. While we will save you money, it's more comprehensive than that. We allow you to keep your existing phone numbers with minimal issues. This is known as porting and we can handle this for you. For more information: check out 'The UCall Experience'.