What Does The Analogue Phone Switch Off Mean For UK Businesses?

You may have heard of the landline switch-off coming to UK networks in the coming years. The switch-off will impact both home and business phone lines, so if you still rely on analogue equipment, it may be worth considering an upgrade or change to your system before the demand increases. For small businesses, startups in the UK and further afield, and freelancers in particular, shifting to alternative phone solutions sooner rather than later could be wise so they don’t end up without a method of communication. Discover all you need to know about the analogue switch-off and its impact on UK businesses here. 

What Is The 2025 Switch Off?

In 2025, BT Openreach is set to turn off the analogue public switched telephone network (PSTN). The main reason for the switch-off is due to the unreliability of the older analogue technology which is proving to be more and more expensive to maintain. With some of the UK’s copper wires having been in place since the nineteenth century, Openreach, who is responsible for building and maintaining the phone network – have decided that it is time for an upgrade. 

How Will Landlines Be Phased Out In The UK?

This year, in 2023, Openreach will stop accepting new orders for PSTN systems in preparation for the switch-off. Circuits have already begun being turned off in some areas of the UK, so the process is well and truly underway. As well as PSTN systems, Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN) will also be turned off as they rely on landline cables too. Anyone or any organisation with a PSTN or ISDN connection will therefore need to start thinking about a new communication solution. 

Lauren Davies of bOnline commented: “The analogue phone switch off is one of the most important technological events in the UK to happen for quite some time. Although few of us actually use landlines, many people have a landline that is nonetheless used at one time or another, be in in an emergency or otherwise. For some in society, particularly the old and vulnerable, it is important that the phasing out of landlines is done in a way so as not to ignore them and their needs.”

What Is An Internet-Based Phone Service?

The alternative solution to the 2025 landline switch-off is an internet-based phone service or VoIP. These services work in a similar way to landlines, but rather than using copper wires to transmit messages, VoIP sends messages over the internet. Analogue calls are converted into digital data packets which are then routed to the other end of the via before the process is reversed to reveal the sender’s audio.

Unlike landlines, VoIP does not rely on a physical location or handset. Therefore for those working remotely, it can make the world of difference to a previously restrictive system. Much like popular mobile apps such as WhatsApp or Skype, this technology can be used from anywhere with a steady internet connection, making it an ideal modern alternative to business communications. 

How Can VoIP Phones Work For UK Businesses?

VoIP phone systems offer a range of benefits to UK businesses, no matter the industry or size of company. It might seem daunting to change from a familiar system, but the switch-off will come in 2025 whether we are ready or not. Putting steps into place to ease the transition is therefore essential, particularly for businesses that rely on digital communications. Here, we’ve outlined some of the main advantages of VoIP for UK businesses: 


A great benefit is that VoIP systems are often pretty affordable. There is no need to invest in expensive hardware, plus the call costs of VoIP phones are cheaper than those of landlines, making the switch a wise decision both practically and financially. What’s more, there are no maintenance fees as the majority of issues can be handled digitally, removing the need for an IT support team. 

Easily Integrated

Integrating a VoIP business phone system into any existing software, including CRM and HR applications is straightforward and easy to implement. VoIP systems allow users to conduct tasks in a quicker and more streamlined manner compared to traditional software which is used individually. For example, VoIP apps can be used to enter customer information straight into your CRM without having to wait until the call is finished. VoIP business integration is therefore a huge benefit to the technology. 

Increased Functionality

Finally, VoIP has a number of impressive features all in one place. With personalised voicemail, call forwarding, customised hold music, and a whole host of other professional features, UK businesses can take their communication to the next level, without the hassle of installing a range of individual programmed elements.