What is SoGEA Broadband?

SoGEA stands for Single Order Generic Ethernet Access. Now you only need to place one order with Gamma for your broadband data service. Traditional phone line installation is not needed with Gamma SoGEA so costs fall.

Gamma SoGEA delivers the same performance and data rates as FTTC broadband. It uses the same infrastructure and has the same geographic availability, future-proofing connectivity as the UK moves to an all-IP network.

Learn more about how our voice, connectivity and mobile products can help you achieve your comms goals by contacting Gamma or one of our specialist partners.

About SoGEA

Important information about SoGEA

What is SoGEA Broadband?

  • SoGEA stands for Single Order Generic Ethernet Access.
  • Until now you needed to have a traditional phone line installed to deliver broadband to a home or office, but SoGEA broadband doesn’t run over a phone line; instead, it uses the same fibre/copper network without the WLR (Wholesale Line Rental = Phone line) element.
  • SoGEA is offered at the same data rates as FTTC broadband. It delivers the same performance and has the same geographic availability. The only difference is the need for a phone line has been removed.
  • SoGEA is a dedicated line that delivers a broadband connection and includes an underlying version of a phone line. This means that customers moving to SoGEA from a phoneline-reliant broadband solution will need a voice call service that uses VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) to continue to be able to make and receive phone calls.

Gamma SoGEA Broadband

Why was SoGEA created?

In December 2025, the UK PSTN circuits will be shut off completely. This is a major step towards the United Kingdom’s mass IP-network migration, with VoIP core networks set to replace all the legacy PSTN services.

It means that there is a significant opportunity in terms of both new and existing business.

All existing WLR customers need migrating to a non-WLR solution, many in the next 12-24 months as OpenReach continue to service notice on exchanges across the country. And there are around 3 million B2B PSTN and ISDN fixed lines that must be migrated by 2025, so plenty of new business to be won.

SoGEA provides a broadband solution using the existing fibre/copper network, where fibre to the premises (FTTP) is not yet available.

Fibre to the Cabinet Broadband

Why do you need Gamma SoGEA?

In 2017, British Telecom announced their intention to switch off the existing telephone network completely, having migrated all services to the newer and more efficient fibre broadband network. Therefore, come December 2025 the entire UK Wholesale Line Rental network will cease to exist.

However, it would be a mistake to think about waiting until nearer the 2025 deadline, as the migration of services is happening today and will pick up pace from June 2021 when notice is served on more than a hundred phone exchanges across the country.

Gamma SoGEA provides an effective solution today by using the existing fibre/copper network, making it available to more than 90% of premises across the United Kingdom.

Important note

You will need a VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) voice product such as Gamma PhoneLine+ or a hosted telephony platform like Gamma Horizon if you want to continue to make and receive voice calls and use your existing telephone number.

It is essential that the porting of any existing phone numbers is completed before the service is switched to Gamma SoGEA, or numbers can be irretrievably lost.


  • What does SoGEA stand for?

    SoGEA stands for Single Order Generic Ethernet Access.

  • What is SoGEA?

    SoGEA can provide your business with internet access without the need for a supporting voice access product (aka, a phone line). It is a dedicated line that delivers your broadband connection. Traditional ISDN lines will be sunsetted across the UK by 2025 – so investing in SoGEA is an excellent way to future-proof your organisation’s connectivity.

  • How is SoGEA installed?

    SoGEA uses the same technology as FTTC. The difference is, if you do not currently have a phone line, you will not need to install one to get up and running with SoGEA, reducing your operational costs significantly.

  • Is SoGEA fibre or copper?

    SoGEA will be delivered to your premises using a mix of fibre optic cables and copper wiring. Fibre optic cables will be run from the exchange to a side street cabinet, and the service is supplied from the cabinet to your property via copper cables.

  • What is the difference between SoGEA and FTTC?

    The main difference between the two technologies is that FTTC broadband requires a separate phone line, whereas SoGEA is provided on a single line. SoGEA is also considered to be more reliable option with a lower risk of downtime. However, FFTC can carry a data and voice service, whereas SoGEA can only carry data.

  • Can I keep my current phone number?

    Yes but you will need to take out an OTT VoIP service (like Gamma’s PhoneLine+) to run in parallel with your SoGEA, and ensure that your Gamma channel partner ports your existing number to your new service, or you will lose the number forever once you migrate from the existing WLR-reliant broadband service.

  • Can I use my current phone?

    You can use your current analogue phone by connecting via an ATA (Analog Telephone Adapter) to the IP network.

  • Do I need a voice call service?

    It comes down to whether you need a voice service alongside data. Gamma SoGEA can easily be paired with a hosted telephony system like Gamma PhoneLine+ that delivers voice over IP and therefore can run over the data connection, allowing you to have telephone services without the need of a telephone line.

  • My business landline is essential, will the call quality to be good?

    The speed of broadband is now genuinely fast enough to negate any problems around quality. SoGEA uses the same infrastructure as FTTC so the connectivity is identical to FTTC and the network is tried and tested.

    Plus you can expect to receive FTTC speeds and because there is no phoneline involved there is less chance of connectivity issues or interference. Today there are hundreds of thousands of businesses who rely solely on VoIP to deliver their business voice calls.

  • How will this affect other devices I use in the premises?

    If you have SoGEA, you will need to connect any devices that currently are plugged into the telephony wall socket in the premises, into the router. This could include Telecare devices, Intruder alarm, Fire alarm etc. You should make your device service provider aware of the change so that they can make sure that they will continue to work or provide a suitable alternative.

  • Why should I change now? Will anything happen before the end of 2025?

    To ensure that your services continue with minimal disruption you should engage with your Gamma channel partner to agree a migration plan. The Openreach timeline has been up and running since 2017 and includes a number of regional “stop sell” dates, which are dates after which Service Providers will no longer be able to obtain new supply for their customers of analogue services, and there is a national “stop sell” date of September 2023.

    In addition Openreach have announced they will stop selling PSTN and ISDN products in117 exchanges from June 2021. This will affect over 1.2 million customer premises including business, and from that date you won’t be able to buy new analogue lines in these areas.

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