The Countdown to the Future: Navigating the PSTN Switch-Off
The Public Switching Telephone Network (PSTN) switch-off at the end of 2025. For over 150 years, the PSTN has been the backbone of communication for homes and enterprises, but its time has come to make way for the next generation of all IP products that will shape our future network. In this article, we delve into the challenges, opportunities, and actions that businesses must take to successfully navigate this transition.
The clock is ticking, and businesses across the UK are facing an unprecedented transformation event
The impending PSTN switch-off bears a resemblance to the transition from analogue to digital TV broadcasting but with a striking difference in the level of awareness. When TVs went digital, the news was ubiquitous on TV and radio, and leaflets flooded through people’s doors. The government made significant efforts to spread the word and ensure a smooth transition. However, in the case of the PSTN switch-off, the awareness efforts are not as widespread. It is primarily champions like Gamma, who actively participate in the Fit to Switch campaign, that are raising awareness of the potential service disruptions. With the national stop sell scheduled for September 2023, the deadline is fast approaching, leaving businesses with no safety net. To ensure business continuity, organisations must act now and partner with experts like Gamma to navigate the complex transformation ahead. The countdown is imminent, and preparation is the key to a successful transition.
Facing the Complexity
The PSTN switch-off is not just another IT project. It is a colossal migration in the telecoms industry, involving millions of lines and thousands of businesses. The complexity can be overwhelming, making it essential for businesses to understand the implications and plan accordingly. As we stand here today, we are running out of days until Openreach stops selling legacy products. But that’s just the beginning of the countdown.
The Compelling Dates
The two key dates to mark on your calendars are September 5th and December 1st, 2025. On September 5th, ISDN services extended to version 30 will no longer be available for procurement or switching between service providers. But the real deadline is December 1st, 2025—when those services will go dark, leaving sites without connectivity. We have until then to transform and migrate the 10 million services that Openreach plans to switch off. This may seem like a long time, but when you consider the number of transformations required, the clock is already ticking loudly.
Plan for Success
The key to successful navigation lies in acting now, not later. Waiting until the last moment will only lead to a chaotic rush and may jeopardise your business operations. Understanding your estate inside out, identifying critical elements, and planning for budget cycles and contract renewals are crucial steps to kickstart your transformation journey.
Working with a trusted partner can be a game-changer. Find a partner you can rely on. One with a wealth of experience and deep relationships with Openreach, helping to facilitate smooth transitions to next-generation services. With discovery, planning, and ongoing support, a partner that can help you navigate the complexities at each and every turn of the switch-off.
Would you like to be at the front of the queue? … or the back?
Rather than viewing the switch-off as a burden, see it as an opportunity to redefine your business’s communication strategy. Consider what your company aims to achieve in the next few years and use this transformation as a chance to optimise your estate, cutting waste, and investing in areas that will drive future success. The move to full-fibre Ethernet and cloud-based solutions presents numerous opportunities to enhance your organisation’s capabilities and thrive in a digital-first world.
The time to act is now. Engage with experts to start your journey toward the next-generation communication landscape. Don’t get caught in the back of the queue as the deadline approaches. Take this opportunity to lead the change and ensure a seamless transition for your business.
Find the right partner to be your guiding partner throughout the entire transition process. The first step is discovery, a critical phase where you must know your communication landscape inside out. Gamma can help by providing valuable data for your access services, but also understanding those services that might lie outside their scope. Knowing every facet of your communication infrastructure is essential to a smooth migration.
The time to act is now. Engage with experts to start your journey toward the next-generation communication landscape.
Identifying Critical Elements
As you embark on your transformation journey, it’s crucial to identify the elements that can make or break your migration. These critical elements demand careful planning and consideration. Share these aspects with Gamma’s experts so they can be factored into the roadmap, ensuring that your transformation aligns with your business needs and priorities.
Creating an Effective Roadmap
Developing a roadmap to the future requires close collaboration with your third-party suppliers. Gamma can work with them to identify the most suitable transformation plan. Moreover, this is the perfect opportunity to evaluate your existing infrastructure and rationalize outdated components. Discard any legacy elements that are no longer needed, thus avoiding unnecessary headaches down the line.
Understanding Your Business Calendar
Transitioning to the next-generation communication landscape doesn’t happen in isolation. It’s crucial to consider other business-related events, such as budget cycles and contract renewals, which may impact the transformation process. Align your roadmap with these events to ensure a seamless journey to the future.
Skilled Project Management
Gamma’s dedicated project and program managers will take charge of overseeing the delivery of your transformation plan. With their expertise and support, you can be confident that the migration will proceed smoothly, with minimal disruptions to your operations.
Beyond the Migration: Ongoing Support
Once the migration is complete, your partner’s responsive support teams and managed service specialists must step in to ensure that your communication infrastructure continues to run optimally. Insist that you and your business have a full managed service and 24/7 support network at your disposal, so you can rest assured that your business is in safe hands.
The PSTN switch-off is inevitable, and businesses must embrace the change and plan for success. With the right partner, diligent planning, and a proactive approach, organisations can transform their communication networks smoothly and unlock the potential of full-fibre, IP-based solutions. Seize the moment to be at the forefront of the future and embrace the opportunities that lie ahead. The countdown has begun—let’s make it a journey of growth and innovation. Embrace the change, optimise your communication landscape, and pave the way for a thriving digital future. The future is waiting; let’s journey towards it together.
Embrace the change and plan for success. With the right partner, diligent planning, and a proactive approach, organisations can transform their communication networks smoothly and unlock the potential of full-fibre, IP-based solutions.