Welsh Telecoms Provider: BT network closure will affect almost every business in the UK

Welsh Business Telecoms provider, ITCS, has faced a higher than average number of calls after the UK’s main telephone network provider, BT, announced plans to close the UK’s traditional PSTN telephone network in Britain.

BT’s old systems are out of date, having not changed much since the very first line in the 1800s.  The cost of ongoing repairs and upgrades means that the old analog technology will cease to be viable.  From 2025, all customers will be switched to VOIP telephony services, whereby customers will have to switch to a system of calls being made digitally over the internet.

Openreach has already written to communications providers advising them of the change and will be consulting with wholesale providers about the withdrawal of these services in May, although it’s not just ‘a problem for the future’ as existing services are already being phased out in some areas.   For example, BT stopped installing new ISDN lines in London in 2014, and in some areas fibre to the premises is being installed rather than fibre to the cab.

Who will the change affect?

As well as private individuals the move will impact on ALL businesses currently using traditional telephone services or ISDN lines on BT’s network.  Ofcom stats reveal that In 2017 there were well over 2 million companies still using ISDN connections in the UK, so this could impact a significant number of businesses..

Is this bad news for my business?

Provided BT are able to deliver on their promises for improving broadband speeds in rural areas, ITCS say this is actually very good news for business, as VOIP delivers high quality calls for a fraction of the cost.  The announcement will further increase the mounting pressure on BT to improve broadband lines in more remote locations., but for most businesses, VOIP is already a viable and cost effective option for many of our customers, including those in Wales.

What are the alternatives?

ITCS believe that customers should move to using VOIP as soon as possible. simply because there are cost savings to be made.  Many ITCS customers enjoy call-inclusive packages from £15.00 per month for business users.  Callers still use a handset, and dial as normal, so from a user’s point of view there is little difference – but the monthly bills are a lot lower.

With the end of the PSTN network now firmly announced, the old system is going anyway, so it makes sense to make savings as soon as possible.

Managing Director of ITCS, Brian Stokes, said:

“BT have not installed any new ISDN lines in central London since 2014, because many businesses have already moved on. Up until today, we’ve been advising our telecoms customers to switch to a VOIP system for cost benefits.  Now it’s not even a choice to make, with BT’s announcement of PSTN ending, it’s simply common sense to move to VOIP as soon as possible and benefit from the savings sooner rather than later.”

If you are worried about how the end of PTSN will impact on your business, the ITCS Telecoms team are happy to answer any questions.  Contact ITCS on 08456 444 200.