What’s the ISDN/PSTN switch-off?

BT is retiring the infrastructure that supports landline phones. They’re installing a more advanced digital network in its place, and all calls will be routed over IP (internet protocol).

This is already under way. As of 5th September 2023, BT Openreach is no longer selling products based on this legacy technology, and in many parts of the country the old lines are shut down. This will be complete nationwide by 2025.

What are ISDN and PSTN lines?

PSTN stands for public switched telephone network. This is basically the same copper-cable technology the very first phones ran on back in the late 1800s.

ISDN means integrated services digital network. It was first rolled out in the 1980s and was a big upgrade on PSTN. Among other improvements, it allowed multiple simultaneous calls on a single line.

ISDN has been improved over the years to keep up with advances in broadband. But eventually, BT decided enough was enough – and instead of more tweaks, we needed a whole new network.

Why is BT shutting them down?

In short, they’re 20th century technologies, for the age of landlines and fax machines. We use far more data than ever before – think of video calls, the cloud, smartphones…

The UK needs the digital infrastructure to support this new world. This means faster broadband and higher speeds. This faster broadband is already widespread, why not check out our new broadband checker to see if your business is eligible to upgrade?

broadband checker

How does the ISDN/PSTN switch-off affect you?

After the switch-off every business in the UK will need a phone system that runs over IP, and the connectivity to support it. Without this, your phones won’t work. And it’s not just phones – lots of other technologies run on these old phone lines. These could include CCTV, EPOS or access control systems.

What’s an alternative solution?

We recommend a cloud-based phone system. These are incredibly flexible, scalable and feature-rich. Instead of being tied down to hardware, you get a powerful system that you can use from anywhere.

You’ll have all the features of a traditional phone system and more. With a cloud system from RHM, you can do voice, video, instant messaging and so much more.

It’s time to switch up before you’re switched off!

Top 3 reasons to switch to a cloud phone system now:

Group 138


Costs are rising everywhere you look – and calls are no exception. With a cloud system, call costs are dramatically reduced because they’re routed over IP.

Group 136


Cloud offers so much more. You can use a cloud system from anywhere, on any device. You can add new users at the click of a mouse. You can even integrate with your CRM. In short it offers more flexibility and more efficiency.

Group 137

The clock’s ticking!

The deadline is 2025 – but that doesn’t mean you should wait till 2025. Your area could be switched off earlier, and you really don’t want to be at the back of the queue. Instead, you can have a future-proof cloud system now!

Mobile packages

RHM has access to all major UK networks and has the ability to pull together packages to suit your business needs and profile. We can either give you access to the standard tariffs available from the carriers but billed and supported by RHM, or we can design you a bespoke tariff using your own billing system.

If you have challenging coverage issues, we can even give you the abillity to mix and match carriers, all billed and supported by us via our helpdesk team.

In terms of devices RHM has set up a number of key trade accounts with SIM free hardware providers. This enables you to leverage our trade discounts and choose from virtually any mobile device on the market, from mobile phone to smart phone to tablet. In addition we support all operating systems from Android to IOS to Windows and Blackberry.

Mobile device management

RHM offer a managed MDM solution through IBM’s Maas360.

With so much data now accessed via corporate mobiles including sensitive email, attachments businesses really have to think about their security policies. Cybercrime is on the increase with hackers becoming even more creative. If you then layer on the compliance environment with GDPR regulation last year, corporate mobiles or BYOD pose a real risk to business.

RHM can help businesses reduce this exposure from as little as £2.00 per device per month with its Maas360 device management packages

Our MDM capabilities enable IT teams to secure and manage mobile devices across multiple operating systems, providing secure corporate email, automatic device configuration, certificate-based security, and selective wipe of enterprise data for both corporate and user-owned devices.

IBM’s MaaS360, solution, enables Corporate IT departments to manage, support and secure company and employee owned devices, using leading-edge technology.

SMS solutions and virtual mobile numbers

Did you know 98% of SMS messages are opened and read?

Text messaging is a well-established medium for business-to-business and business-to-consumer communication. Not only is it a proven marketing tool, it’s time efficient compared to making phone calls or sending costly mailings.

We can provide SMS management, delivery and receipt through a web-based application, email gateway, Software API or hosted SMS relay services.

SMS Web Gateway integrates with your existing applications to enable the sending of SMS messages over the internet. Messages can be sent directly from any web browser via any web-enabled device. The Gateway automatically routes messages to mobile phone networks and supports media conversion from email and other formats.

Need more information or advice? Call us now 0345 136 60 60

© rhm telecommunications 2024