The Public Switch Telephone Network (PSTN) has formed the basis of the UK’s telephony infrastructure since the first phone lines were installed back in 1875. It is still used to connect calls by transmitting analogue voice data — all business landlines use the PSTN.

It’s also used for older broadband connections through the Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL) system, which uses the same copper wires that form the PSTN to deliver internet connectivity.

BT will turn off the PSTN on 31 January 2027. How can you prepare your business for the big switch off?

The future is VoIP

To continue making and receiving calls, all businesses need to replace their landline with a digital phoneline. Voice over Internet Protocol, or VoIP, performs all the same functions of a traditional landline. It is also scalable, allowing businesses to add or remove connections in just a few minutes, and gives firms the flexibility to take calls from anywhere and everywhere.

Broadband alternatives

If your current broadband connection operates using the ASDL network, you’ll also need to switch your broadband over to ultra-fast full fibre. There are a few options:

  • Fibre to the Premises (FTTP), which is the ultimate goal, but is not currently available in all areas.
  • Fibre to the cabinet (FTTC), which uses fibre optic cables for connectivity up to the green street cabinet, but then relies on copper wires from the cabinet to the business.
  • Single Order Generic Ethernet Access (SOGEA), which is similar to FTTC but comes    without a landline