The Copper Switch Off: Your Guide to the PSTN Switch Off in 2025

The UK’s public telephone network is undergoing a major transformation, and businesses must be prepared for the copper switch off.  

By 2025, the traditional infrastructure supporting our communication systems, including the copper cables underground and telephone lines above, will no longer be in use.

This transition, known as the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) and Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN) switch-off, is driven by the increasing demands of modern communications.

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This article will explore the implications of the PSTN switch-off happening in 2025 and what it means for homes and businesses.

The Transition from PSTN and ISDN

The PSTN and ISDN switch-off is not limited to the business world but also affects recreational and residential services. 

The UK’s telephone network provider, BT Openreach, is phasing out the PSTN by the end of 2025, encouraging a complete embrace of fully internet-based communications.

To facilitate this transition, a “Stop Sell” program was implemented in October 2021, which restricts the purchase of new PSTN-based phone services and ends renewals of legacy services. 

If you’re still operating an analogue phone system that works off a copper line, you need to switch to a digital phone line and do so in plenty of time to avoid getting cut off. 

Timeline of the PSTN Switch-Off

The transition towards the switch-off has already begun, with BT Openreach announcing its intention to switch off the PSTN in 2025. Trial sites in Salisbury and Midenhall were announced in June 2019, followed by the process to start retiring PSTN and ISDN services in December 2020.

The “Stop Sell” notices were issued in May 2021 for the Midenhall trial site and in September 2023 for all affected areas. 

The final copper wire PSTN network switch-off is set to occur in December 2025.

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The Copper Switch Off: Your Guide to the PSTN Switch Off in 2025. Image of Phone lines above the ground.
Photo by Caleb Rankin on Unsplash

Modern Telephony: Phone Systems Are Moving Forward

Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) is the leading alternative to traditional landlines for telephony services. VoIP utilises an internet connection to transmit voice calls.

Most connections can support stable VoIP calls with the advancements in fibre broadband speeds. Migrating to a VoIP system typically involves connecting your telephone directly to the router, ensuring a seamless transition without significant infrastructure changes.

Using a VoIP provider is best to ensure you have compatible equipment and can transition seamlessly. 

Benefits of Switching to VoIP 

There are several advantages to adopting a VoIP telephone system over traditional landlines:

  1. Lower Costs: VoIP is software-based, eliminating the need for additional infrastructure or upfront costs.
  2. Greater Scalability: Portal-based solutions allow easy scalability to accommodate changing business needs, such as adding more lines during peak seasons.
  3. Increased Productivity: VoIP systems offer advanced features that enhance call handling efficiency, leading to improved productivity.
  4. Flexibility: VoIP can be accessed from various devices, freeing users from being tied to a desk phone and enabling calls from anywhere.

You can read more about the benefits of switching to VOIP in this article

Seizing Opportunities with the PSTN Switch Off

The switch-off presents an excellent opportunity for small businesses to enhance customer experience and efficiency. Calls will be clearer, and the ability to make multiple simultaneous calls will improve productivity.

VoIP systems offer faster implementation of changes, such as call routing and divert, with various hardware and equipment choices available.

VoIP systems also open doors to Over-the-Top (OTT) services, which deliver content over the internet. As a result, users can enjoy greater flexibility in making and receiving calls and accessing services on various devices ranging from desk phones to mobiles, tablets, and computers.

With VoIP, businesses can make and receive calls on multiple devices using the same telephone number from anywhere in the world (where they have an internet connection or data), ensuring uninterrupted communication and access to essential business applications and systems.

The PSTN switch-off and the subsequent move to all-IP present a unique opportunity for businesses of all sizes to take control of their customer interactions and overcome existing challenges.

Smaller businesses can compete with larger enterprises without breaking the bank, as VoIP solutions offer scalability and growth potential.

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Preparing for the Copper Switch Off

To ensure a smooth transition, businesses should evaluate all devices currently using PSTN connections, such as door entry systems, alarms, emergency lines, payment terminals, and cash machines.

Upgrading equipment or using adaptors to make devices compatible with VoIP should be initiated as early as possible. While the process can start anytime until 2025, switching over sooner rather than later is best.

Embracing the Future with VOIP

The PSTN switch-off is inevitable; the best way forward is to adopt a VoIP solution. The transition to an all-IP (Internet Protocol) environment is already underway, and businesses can no longer purchase older services.

The longer a business waits to make the move, the more challenging it will be to find appropriate solutions for their needs. 

However, thousands of businesses have already embraced VoIP solutions, which not only offer superior technology compared to outdated telephone systems but also provide cost-effective alternatives. 

Now is the time to embrace the technology of the future. By transitioning to VoIP, businesses can streamline their telephony systems, improve customer experiences, increase efficiency, and reduce costs.

With the December 2025 deadline approaching, it’s crucial to start planning and implementing the necessary changes to ensure a smooth and successful transition.

Don’t Miss the Copper Switch Off December 2025 Deadline 

The PSTN switch-off in 2025 marks a significant shift in how businesses and individuals communicate. Embracing VoIP technology offers numerous benefits, including cost savings, scalability, increased productivity, and flexibility.

By making the switch early, businesses can stay ahead of the curve, enhance customer experiences, and unlock new growth opportunities.

Don’t wait until it’s too late. Start exploring VoIP solutions today and prepare your business for the future of telephony.

For further information or assistance in transitioning to a VoIP system, contact Kingstar Services.


Philip Gilkes

My aim and mission are to provide a personal level of service that keeps your tech running correctly and helps your business thrive.

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