How will the ISDN switch off affect your business?

Posted on 19th June 2019 under News.

Businesses who use telephones will need to ensure their phone system runs over an internet connection rather than traditional telephone lines by 2025. This comes as BT has announced plans to switch off the traditional telephone ISDN network and migrate all phone systems online by 2025, affecting millions of businesses across the UK.

Rather than having on premise equipment, a phone system is hosted in a data centre delivering a host of features that are available on a traditional phone system but transported via the internet.

ISDN (Integrated Service Digital Network) is a circuit-switched telephone network system that allows both voice and data services to be delivered over digital lines simultaneously. It was launched by BT in 1986 as a means to migrate outdated landline technology to digital.

According to BT, the move should take place by 2025 and businesses supported by ISDN should have it as a reality as early as today. In the same statement issued in 2015, BT was clear that no more orders will be taken by 2020.

ISDN can be more technical hence the need to break it down to make it more understandable. This means the network setup that supports in carrying telephone conversations as well as data when accessing the internet when using your telephone. With the advance notice to make it a reality by 2025, there isn’t a need for panic as businesses can adjust to the available alternatives.

Why is the ISDN being switched off?

Like all commercial decisions, it’s driven by cost and profits. While the infrastructure that underpins ISDN has been significantly overhauled and upgraded since it was first launched by BT in 1986, the network has remained pretty much unchanged.

BT has invested heavily in VoIP, so it doesn’t make any sense to invest further in its legacy ISDN network. By converging all of their services to IP, BT will be able to focus their resources and energy into a technology that will allow it to meet the demands of businesses in the future.

The technology behind ISDN was among the first when telephony network was being introduced. Even though it has undergone a lot of upgrades to match the current technological needs, its core logic has remained the same. BT will be switching it off due to the high cost of maintenance of the old infrastructure which is attracting them to move to a more modern infrastructure.

It’s the same reason as no longer using a Nokia 3310, but on a much larger scale. BT will be replacing its entire voice network as ISDN has become outdated technology and transmission through IP networks has been replacing it, supported by services such as fibre broadband. Traditional telephone systems will eventually become obsolete as they will not be compatible with the new technology replacing ISDN.

What will replace ISDN?

Its good news to all BT clients since a new technology based on IPs has been set in place to replace the old ISDN. This will come as a new opportunity and is likely to give the businesses choice, freedom and control when using SIP and VoIP.

The ISDN switch off and why BT are switching it off hits the headline, there is a lot to understand about the move. What is to expect and what do businesses have to do even as BT works on its move? The move is believed to be more beneficial to business prosperity and is likely to cause no harm.

A virtual phone system, or one that is hosted in the kloud is ideal for developing businesses, start-ups or any organisation who don’t want to invest in an expensive on-site phone system. The great thing about a hosted phone system is the complete flexibility it brings. If you move the system, it moves with you, and new users can be quickly added as you grow.

Come 2025 businesses will need to migrate their phone system online.

Craig Jones, Technical Director of Welsh telecoms provider DataKom says:

“It’s actually very simple to switch. Our cloud-based platform can often be run over the existing data network or a premise may require a structured cabling installation. DataKom’s project management team take care of the setup while the engineering team manage the installation and provide training to ensure the most is being made from the new telephone system”

Craig says: “In a world of evolving technology, it is important to protect your investment with a system that can adopt future technology. A cloud-based phone system can be self-managed through a web portal, offering the flexibility to configure features yourself – such as adding flex keys, hunt groups and new users – great for a growing business. “

“Updates and maintenance to the system are automatic so you’ll always have the latest technology available to maximise business communication needs. The phone system will continue to evolve as technology develops and your company will always be up-to-date”

“Some customers have concerns about an online phone system if the internet connection fails – there are many backup options which take over your voice traffic in this event”

“If your current telephone contract is up for renewal within the next few years, now is the time to start exploring the benefits of new technologies”

What is VoIP?

VoIP calling (Voice over Internet Protocol), allows users to make free or very low-cost calls over the internet. So, an early example of VoIP would be Skype. VoIP used for business is a better scaled version, where you can have a phone handset, and multiple phone lines all connected like a traditional system, but with lower call costs.

DataKom can future proof your business by upgrading your telecoms systems to a kloud-based system. Kloud will assist in your business’s internal and external communications and help boost its overall growth.

Upgrading to a kloud-based system allows your business to become more flexible with many KloudPBX features to benefit your business’s performance. KloudPBX offers features such as, call recording, call tracking, voicemail to email and much more. With a range of devices to suit all office types, weather you are a single office or have multiple locations, kloud can only benefit your business.