Once a staple in homes and businesses across the UK, traditional landlines are now slowly being phased out to make way for modern digital communications. This transition will impact all existing users, so it is important to understand how the switch will occur and how best to prepare. From your broadband to other devices such as alarms, there are a number of things that could be disrupted by the 2025 landline switch off.
Take a look at TechRound’s 7 key steps for seamlessly transitioning to a digital phone line here.
Why Are Landlines Being Switched Off?
By 2025, BT Openreach is due to turn off the existing landline network as part of a global movement towards digitisation. The reason for switching to digital phone lines is mainly due to the outdated nature of landlines. Given the limited capabilities of landlines, the need for a modern communication solution has been evident for quite some time.
Set to replace landlines are digital communication technologies such as Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP). VoIP allows users to make and receive calls over the internet, enabling more flexibility, scalability, and extra features. The technology is therefore more efficient than existing landlines, making it the natural replacement that will bring UK communications up to date.
How To Switch To Digital Communications?
Making the switch to digital phone lines and communications might seem somewhat daunting, but by following the steps below, you can update your communications without inviting disruptions to your day-to-day operations. Transitioning to digital has never been easier.
Lauren Davies of bOnline comments: “We can’t hide from the fact that we are all going to have to embrace digital connectivity and communicating over fewer and fewer analogue channels. Digital communication channels, including VoIP are a seamless way to connect with people around the world for business in particular.”
1. Consider Making The Switch
First, it’s important to fully evaluate your communication needs and assess whether a digital phone line would better suit your requirements. If you are considering a digital phone line for either personal use or your business, you might want to think of the cost, call quality, scalability, available features, and the customer service of providers amongst other requirements.
2. Discuss Options With Your Provider
Next, it might be a good idea to reach out to your current telecommunications provider to inquire about their digital phone line offers. Many UK phone providers will offer VoIP services that can seamlessly replace traditional landlines, so it is worth assessing your options. You might find that you’ll be able to get a more attractive offer by switching to another provider.
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3. Test Your Broadband Connection
As digital phone lines rely on a stable internet connection, it is essential to check whether your broadband connection is robust enough to support voice calls. Running a speed test will offer insights into your connection and should indicate whether or not you’ll need to upgrade to fibre broadband. If you are unsure, it could be worth discussing the speed requirements with your provider.
4. Update Any Necessary Hardware
If your current hardware such as your router, handsets, and phones are not compatible with digital phone lines, you may need to invest in new equipment. There is no point switching to digital if your hardware prevents you from making the most of the technology. Certain UK VoIP providers will offer VoIP-enabled phones that are designed to work effortlessly with their services, so it could be worth checking these out.
5. Plug Phone Into Router
Once you are ready to get things set up, you will first need to connect your VoIP-enabled phone to your router using an Ethernet cable or by following the specific manufacturer’s instructions for wireless setup. This step will establish the connection between your phone and the digital network so it is not one to miss.
6. Check Other Devices
If you have other devices that are connected to your landline such as fax machines, alarms, or telecare devices, you will need to check that they are compatible with the new digital phone line. If not, you could risk these devices failing to work properly. You should mention this to your provider in order to check whether replacements or reconfigurations are needed.
7. Establish Emergency Backups
Whilst digital phone lines are generally very reliable, it might be wise to have some backup options in place in case a power outage or internet disruptions occur. Consider keeping a mobile phone or battery-powered landline phone on hand for emergencies. Your provider will be responsible for ensuring you are able to contact emergency services during an emergency, so if you do not have a mobile phone, it could be worth alerting them to your situation.
The transition from traditional landlines to digital phone lines marks a significant step in communications technology. There are a number of benefits that digital phone lines can offer individuals and businesses alike, so it could be worth making the switch sooner rather than later to take advantage of such benefits. Plus, with landlines being switched off, you will inevitably need to embrace digital communications, so why not make the leap into modernity?