PSTN Switch Off Overview, Impact and Next Steps

Everything you need to know.

Why its time to upgrade your business phone system

Now more than ever your business communications are a critical enabler to success.

But things are changing in the world of telecoms and your existing telephony solution might become obsolete soon.


What’s happening? 

In 2017, BT Openreach announced it intends to switch off all traditional PSTN lines, such as analogue or digital phone lines, ISDN phone systems, and older internet connections, such as ADSL and FTTC broadband, This marks the biggest change in the British telecoms industry for over 30 years.

Anyone using this service, including hundreds of thousands of businesses and millions of consumers will need to migrate to a new service by that time.

How will the switch off affect businesses?

All services using a copper line will be affected. Copper, has become fragile, served its purpose and is making way for a much more resilient replacement. The most apparent services affected are analogue telephone lines (PSTN) and digital lines (ISDN) but it doesn’t stop there. It’s not just about telephone services. Any service that uses this infrastructure will also be impacted, including:

  • Analogue voice telephone services.
  • ISDN lines which are mainly used by phone systems.
  • Broadband services that run over an analogue telephone line.

What are the alternatives to traditional services?


  • VoIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) phone system and is often referred to as IP (internet) telephony or cloud-based telephony. In plain terms, VoIP systems make phone calls using the internet, rather than the traditional telephone exchange or landline network.
  • SIP (Session Initiation Protocol) provides you with a phone line which is carried over your fibre internet connection.


  • FTTP (Fibre to the Premise) providing internet connectivity and IP telephony capability using fibre optic cables all the way to the premise.
  • SOGEA  FTTC (Fibre to the Cabinet) providing internet connectivity and IP telephony capability using fibre optic cables to the green cabinet and then existing copper lines to the premise . These copper lines have no analogue telephony capability.
  • SOGFAST is an enhanced version of SOGEA, which delivers higher speeds than the standard SOGEA product. The higher speeds are enabled by using different technology in the green cabinet and currently has limited availability.

The benefits

Lower Costs

Calls are cheaper on VoIP
compared to traditional
phone lines


Scale your business as required with a flexible infrastructure


You are not tied to a physical location. Make and receive calls from anywhere


Future proof, resilient and will be around for a long time

How Blue Saffron can help you make the switch

We offer a range of telephony and connectivity solutions, from hosted phone systems and SIP trunking to VoIP handsets. Working with leading communication software providers means, we can provide solutions that are cost effective and scalable.

Our team of experts take the time to get to know your business and find the best solution for you, assisting you throughout the process. 

For more information on our telephony and connectivity solutions, contact us today or talk to one of our team on 0844 560 0202.