Copper Switch-off: Will My Business Be Affected?



BT Openreach is set to retire all of their copper wire broadband and telephone lines in what is known as The Copper Switch-off.
You may be wondering, what does this mean for me, and will my business be affected? Read on to find out more.

The Copper Stop Sell

It's not just about the 2025 deadline. BT Openreach have issued a Stop Sell on any new PSTN or ISDN-based voice services, or copper-based broadband from September 2023.

As Glide uses BT's PSTN to deliver some of our voice and internet services, in preparation for this, we’re withdrawing the ability to buy
new or add and change features to existing customer copper-based services from 14th August 2023 in a bid to migrate customer to fibre solutions and facilitate business continuity.

It's time to start planning the migration of your customers to the future of business communications – the longer you wait, the more opportunities you’re missing out on.

Copper Switch-off Deadline

In November 2017, BT announced its intention to switch off the PSTN (Public Switch Telephone Network) lines by 2025. From 2023 providers will stop selling ISDN (integrated Services Digital Network) and PTSN services based on Openreache plans with the aim in  2025 of all significant analogue technologies being withdrawn altogether.  

This withdrawal process is already underway, and from 2023, we will start seeing copper-based broadband and voice products stop sales across exchange areas in the country, making some existing telecommunications and telephony systems obsolete.  

Technologies that will be impacted:  

  • Analogue telephone systems  
  • Digital ISDN voice services  
  • Broadband supported by WLR (Wholesale Line Rental)  
  • Copper-based landline phones 

Impact of WLR and Copper Withdrawal

The copper withdrawal will affect approximately 25 million premises across the UK. More importantly, these implications will affect tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of businesses across the UK utilising an ADSL, FTTC, EoFTTC or an EFM connection.  

Network connections supported via copper and analogue technologies will need to be replaced with a fibre-based alternative. The copper withdrawal might present itself as a problem, but it is an opportunity for your business to have a technology refresh to fully take advantage of the benefits a full Fibre connection can bring.  

Benefits of a fibre connection  

Fibre broadband offers a variety of benefits over traditional copper and analogue technologies for connectivity. Whether you are a new customer or an existing one looking for support or to upgrade, Glides Full Fibre network connects businesses across UK fibre cities and rural hard-to-reach areas. The Glide fibre solution provides: 

  • Scalable infrastructure: fibre connectivity solutions and a network that grows as your business grows, expanding to suit your needs and to develop your digital capabilities.
  • Terabit-ready network: Offering the potential for limitless capacity and resilience across UK cities, campuses, conurbations and many other districts, providing Fibre broadband infrastructure with high bandwidth.
  • Dedicated fibre: Providing low latency and high throughput fibre connecting multiple UK locations to support businesses' utilisation of cloud and internet-based technologies.
  • Fully managed Fibre infrastructure: With long-term support for networks, including maintenance, emergency repairs and recording of assets, utilisation and mapping.

Hosted Voice solutions

With the closing of ISDN and PSTN systems, most businesses still require a telephony system to contact customers and retain a point of contact for their customer base moving forward; A hosted VoIP system, enables users to make and take phone calls over the internet. 

With the increase in the number of companies adopting working from home for employees, there are equally high concerns for staff availability, calls being distributed to the right person and answered promptly. There is a need to enable seamless movement between the office and at-home work. Glide’s range of hosted phone systems and business connectivity can help you solve all these problems. 

Glide Voice

The Glide solution is a complete hosted communications service that provides businesses with an extensive range of fixed and mobile telephony capabilities. Our cloud-hosted VoIP solution offers instant messaging, presence, voice, video, desktop and application sharing. It enables users to access business communications and collaboration services from their favourite devices. Glide Voice supports all the features and functionality of the telephony service for a truly unified communications experience.

Glide Voice benefits include:

  • More reliable connection: Where copper lines experience dropouts, VoIP using a fibre connection offers stronger signals and more reliable connections than traditional phone lines. 
  • Portability and advanced functionalities: you can make calls through your phone line from any device, wherever you are. And it offers packages with advanced functionalities like forwarding, rerouting, integration with CRMs and more.
  • Reduced costs: This tech relies on your existing internet package rather than the service provider's infrastructure, reducing costs.
  • Scalability: Most VoIP service providers operate using the cloud, so you can add as many extra users as you like without it imparting your broadband speeds.

Moving forward

With Glide's Full Fibre, new or existing customers can support multiple users utilising cloud-based software on multiple devices simultaneously without buffering or interruptions. Working from the office or at home will be seamless, enabling a million people to return to work productively. Increased reliability for broadband speeds through fibre will give peace of mind to businesses making customer calls over a VoIP system by proactively managing the copper switch-off.

If you have seen your business connection mentioned or are aware your business connection will be affected, there's no need to panic. There is still time before the cut-off date, and we have an expert team ready to listen to your business needs and help you pick a bespoke solution to fit your circumstance. If you have questions or want information on your replacement options, contact our business team to talk, get more information or see how we can help.  

If you're a vulnerable customer or a business that requires access to emergency services. In this instance, Glide provides a solution to enable support in the case of a power outage keeping you connected to 999 emergency services. For more information, see here.