- The PSTN switch off does not mean replacing any equipment you have on site.
- The PSTN switch off may require some cheap additional equipment for your services
- You do not need a dedicated broadband line for “Quality” reasons, this is managed on the router
- You do not need a dedicated broadband line for VoIP at all unless you are in a really poor broadband area
- Data allowance can be impacted significantly by VoIP, the usage amount is low but it is consistent like a streaming service. If you pay for a data allowance, your costs can go up quite a bit (basically, this counts towards call charges)
- Your set up and the way you deploy services will determine how much the PSTN switch off costs you but it should be a minimal expense, not significant
- The major impact of this for all concerned is Disaster Recovery scenarios and vital services working during outages (or arguably, times they are needed most and most likely needed)
With Disaster Recovery, Ofcom have taken a view where people to date who have moved to VoIP services only have VoIP services.
That they are not using an analogue service for alarms, lifts or just to keep some form of business communication going.
The advice currently being given around VoIP being cheaper is not true.
I have several examples from various suppliers informing customers that the PSTN switch off will result in a requirement to replace on site equipment and solutions, which are simply not true.
VoIP was offered as a cheaper solution while there was competition, these options are now increasingly difficult to find where there isn’t a requirement for you to use their equipment or broadband services, ultimately increasing the costs to business customers.
Remember, the only reason for you to replace all your on-site equipment for communications has been the same as it has always been
Your business has out grown the capacity and functionality of your current solution
The PSTN switch off does not change that, all it means for most people is you need an additional “box” to make your current stuff work.
Finally, if not most importantly, let other people go first
Don’t be pressured into anything by a service provider because the PSTN network is being switched off, let other people make mistakes, let the regulations be sorted out properly for this, then follow on.
For a lot of people, you still need to wait for other solutions to become prevalent anyway, for disaster recovery and certain services that won’t function particularly well, to other associated industries that have a stake in communications for compliance, like card payment devices and insurance policies.
So where possible, unless you have a significant business reason to make the transition, 2022 would be the earliest you should make a choice to do it, the telecoms industry is very slow at resolving issues, so we need 1 year of collected customer data to guide regulations, then 1 year minimum for those regulations to be implemented.