What is the ISDN Switch-Off? And How will it Affect your Business?

The ISDN network has been powering business phone systems for decades now, but BT has announced that it will be shutting down in 2025.  These phone lines have been around for 40 years so it is understandable that they would be phased out, yet many businesses still rely on them.  ISDN lines are still reliable in areas where the internet connection isn’t always viable and have been a stable option for businesses up until now.  By now many businesses have already made the switch to newer SIP or VoIP phones and it is easy to see why.  Apart from the upcoming necessity for businesses to move over, VoIP and SIP phones also offer unmatched flexibility and mobility, whilst still providing audio quality that is as good as any traditional phone system. 

With this in mind, here is how these newer phones could revolutionise your business communications, and the differences that they have to their older ISDN counterparts.

 

A Simple Switch

Firstly, it is important to mention how quick and easy it is to replace ISDN systems. ISDN runs over fixed copper wires, which provided a great sense of reliability years ago, but now just makes them inflexible.  In comparison, newer VoIP systems run over the internet, all you need to do is plug them in and connect them to your broadband.  It is that simple.  This simplicity also comes with added benefits for your team moving forward.  

·      If your team expands then you can add more systems incredibly easily, IP solutions are incredibly scalable.

·      If you change premises then it is really easy to set up your IP phones in a new location, there is no stress about wiring and no massive servers to take with you.

·      New users can get connected straight away, just plug in and go.

·      With VoIP phones you just pay for the phones that you are using, the pricing is as flexible as the systems are.

 

Facilitate Flexible Working

One of the main drawbacks of ISDN lines that people have noticed, especially over the past few years, is their inflexibility. As we have mentioned previously ISDN lines are not very portable at all, and their range of features provide limited usage outside of making audio calls. Their IP phone counterparts are built with the modern business in mind.  An IP phone system can be plugged in and work effectively anywhere, which means that your business can facilitate a full remote working policy.  This, combined with their other features creates a comprehensive communication service for your team:

·      VoIP supports easy conference calls, to create easy collaboration between your team in the office and any staff who work from home.

·      Call forwarding allows you to operate on any system and creates a sense of reliability.  If you can’t be in the office, then just forward your calls to your laptop or smartphone using Unified Communications.

·      IP phones operate over the internet, if your remote staff make their calls using these phones it can massively reduce your phone bill and line rental.  Of course, this extends to the office as well, so in terms of costs VoIP always supports you.


 Maintain high-quality and reliable calls

The main advantage for businesses who were still sticking with their old ISDN phone systems was reliability.  Due to the fixed copper lines that they run on, they could provide consistently clear audio and rarely ran into trouble.  For a long time, this was just the way it was, ISDN lines were more reliable whereas new IP lines were flexible but didn’t provide consistently clear communications.  This is no longer the case though.

Far from the days of free Skype calls, VoIP services now lead the way in terms of audio quality.  Whether you are making long-distance calls to customers or a conference call with multiple users, VoIP services can provide crystal clear audio anywhere with an internet connection.  If the connection does drop though, you can easily work around it as VoIP provides a simple way to create business continuity.  Even if the worst happens and you can’t access your office for whatever reason, you can forward your calls to a laptop, smartphone or your home phone.

For the modern business, mobility and reliability go hand in hand.  VoIP systems provide consistently high-quality calls wherever you or your team are working.  With the arrival of 5G it is becoming even easier to facilitate larger conference calls over the internet, so the potential for IP phones is only increasing.

 

The end of the ISDN network will cause some difficulty for businesses, but only the ones that aren’t prepared.  IP phones have been steadily improving for the past 15 years and are now the industry leaders when it comes to business communication and innovation.  Providing the same reliability and call quality that you would expect from a traditional phone line, whilst facilitating a new way to work flexibly and efficiently on the go.

The sooner you make the switch, the easier the process will be, at Berry we offer a range of VoIP phone services that are easy to install and upgrade as your business grows.  Our support staff are highly experienced and can help you and your team as you adapt to your new system, if you need any help get in contact with us today at 0330 222 0332.

We know no two businesses are alike, so we've put together a VoIP system builder so you can create a solution that is just right for your team. Take a Look! https://www.berrytelecom.co.uk/system_builder