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Is your business ready for the ISDN switch off?

 In Blog

Is your business ready for the ISDN switch off?

If your business currently uses one of the 3.2 million ISDN channels in the UK, are you ready for the big ISDN switch off? With the general shift towards cloud based services, more and more businesses are migrating their telephone calls over the Internet using SIP instead of traditional phone lines or ISDN. This has forced BT to announce the withdrawal of ISDN in 2025, further accelerating this migration to SIP.

What does the ISDN switch off mean for businesses with ISDN lines?

If you have ISDN lines, you should start thinking about upgrading to SIP telephone lines at some point in the future. From a purely cost perspective the sooner you move to SIP the more you will benefit as SIP lines are less costly than ISDN lines and offer more flexibility with numbers and inclusive call packages.

How soon do we need to switch?

Although the ISDN switch off is not until 2025,  in 3 years time ie by 2020, businesses will no longer be able to buy any systems that use ISDN networks. In addition, the demise of ISDN means that investment in the platform is likely to decrease which could have a knock on effect on the standard of the existing network and support infrastructure.

Although 2025 may seem a long way off, businesses that are planning to upgrade their telephone system should be looking at a SIP solution well before then.

What’s the alternative to ISDN?

Rather than using ISDN copper lines, SIP transmits voice over an Internet connection. Many businesses are already using SIP because it is more cost effective which has contributed to the steady decline in ISDN services.

What to do

Now is the time to start exploring the benefits and opportunities of SIP technology, especially if your current ISDN telephone contract is up for renewal at some time in the near future.

The benefits of moving to SIP include:

Cost savings – SIP is cheaper on a per channel basis with no line rental and cheaper calls and free calls between an organisation’s offices

Flexibility – SIP enables a business to easily scale up or reduce the number of channels that they require

Virtual numbers – Numbers are virtual so stay with a firm or an employee wherever they are making remote working easier

Mobility – Remote workers can login to SIP from anywhere using an Internet connection (even from a mobile)

Reliability – SIP offers a robust business continuity service that ensures a business never loses calls even if it cannot access its premises

Inclusive call packages – Many suppliers like STL deliver SIP with inclusive call package so businesses can enjoy free calls

Integration– SIP technology uses the Internet so it is possible to integrate it with other business systems like email or CRM systems

Centralised SIP – multi-site organisations can replace multiple ISDN lines with one centralised SIP trunk and aggregate their SIP channels

There are a few other considerations like making sure that your broadband is fast enough for SIP and that your phone system can support SIP. If not, this is the time to upgrade to an IP-enabled on-premise PBX or to replace your phone system with hosted telephony.

So with the ISDN switch off getting ever closer, if you want to know more about moving from ISDN to SIP and the benefits it can bring to your organisation, call our sales team on 01993 777120 or email

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