There has been a lot of buzz in the communication technology landscape about the forthcoming PSTN switch-off. This is especially true for businesses that use telephone and data services through fixed lines into their buildings.
This has been a long-overdue change and has felt like something on the back burner for years. But it became clear that something needed to change, especially with the challenges of the past 18 months. However, technological advancements in the communications landscape have transformed and turned to the use of more sustainable strategies to communicate and collaborate.
The PSTN switch-off now allows small-medium-sized businesses to speed up their communication and collaboration strategies with ease.
What is the PSTN Network?
The public switched telephone network (PSTN) is the conventional circuit-switched landline telephone network we know today. Those copper wires that were used in the 1800s are now supplemented by newer technologies like fiber optics and satellite links.
In recent decades, many businesses have routed their digital communications over the PSTN. Businesses that communicate mostly using landlines have evolved to the PSTN switch-off, allowing new and more efficient communications providers to resell their phone services, making communication more streamlined.
Again, communications technology has advanced to the point that most of our calling and data communications happen online. Many businesses no longer use traditional phone lines. Instead, a growing number of businesses have switched to IP (VoIP).
It’s safe to say that all services, including voice, data, video, and broadcasting, will soon switch to the IP protocol. Plus, it goes without saying that the old office landlines will no longer have a dial tone.
What Does the Switch-Off Mean for Your Business?
Firstly, it is important to note that the switch-off won’t appreciably alter your actual user experience. If anything, you may already be using VoIP for your business operations without knowing it. For example, if your business makes calls using services like Skype for business or WhatsApp.
You may even have landlines that are partly routed over the internet instead of the PSTN. In all fairness, you probably don’t know how the person on the other end of your voice call receives your message, right?
Time Your Transition
There’s never a perfect time for the PSTN switch-off than now. If your business still depends on the PSTN, then it’s time you started preparing yourself for VoIP.
If 2020’s remote revolution taught us anything, it’s that we must make significant changes to how we communicate. Your business needs a more sustainable communication and collaboration strategy to remain competitive and relevant.
And that includes having the right system for your business will depend on finding the best communications solution. To some extent, it will depend on the availability of stable high-speed fiber broadband in your location. The convenience of the 5G rollout makes things relatively easier in the UK. If anything, it looks like a part of a perfectly planned scheme.
Businesses that transition to VoIP ahead of the switch-off are definitely set to enjoy numerous benefits, with the strategic advantage over your competition being the most important one. Don’t wait until the last minute when many VoIP service providers may overprice their subscriptions with a significant risk of outages/downtime.
Perks of VoIP for Small/Medium Businesses
The PSTN switch-off comes with numerous benefits, with some of the most immediate ones including:
· No More Hardware Installations
The days when you had to wait for a professional to lay new lines or use physical equipment on your communications system will be long gone. Everything will be delivered as pure software, including applications specifically optimized for both your desktop and mobile devices.
This will allow you to configure new accounts, add multiple lines (geo-specific outbound numbers and virtual extensions), and even add entire new banks of lines to your account. And you can do all this without having a single physical endpoint.
· Save Money
As a business, you’re probably already paying for internet and data services to remain operations. By adding a phone system into this environment, you will notice immediate savings over the traditional phone lines and equipment.
You will also save more by using calling tariffs, especially when your business makes several outbound calls to mobile phones. Several studies show that VoIP phone services cost over 68% less than the traditional PSTN. Plus, you can save even more on toll-free numbers that typically have lower per-minute costs with VoIP.
The inherent productivity of using the VoIP phone system is unbeatable, especially when it comes to features like call recording that save your business communications costs.
· Work Anywhere, Call Anywhere
Even today, many businesses still use voice as the last link in their cloud-enablement chain. And the benefits of using this shared data and document assets service are unimaginable. But text and video communications have become more popular and proved to be critical among many businesses, especially with the Coronavirus pandemic.
There’s no denying that working remotely is the next phase of ‘normality.’ And VoIP is the key to unlocking the real benefits of location-independent working. VoIP allows your team to stay in touch through their phones and laptops from anywhere in the world.
Business in 2021 is global. Don’t get tied behind by a physical landline when your team can access your business processes from anywhere and on any device.
· Security and Upgrades Flowing
Another significant advantage of using VoIP is that because everything is available as a service, you’re also always assured of having your software maintained and updated continually to the latest version. Your service provider pushes patches and upgrades to the whole network when available.
This way, you are always assured of running the latest version of your cloud-based software. This also relieves the stress of having an in-house IT person working round the clock to secure your network and respond to threats.
Now is the time for the PSTN switch-off. What are you waiting for?
There’s never been a better time to switch from PSTN to VoIP and enjoy the many benefits it comes with. Embark yourself and your business on the journey to VoIP freedom, savings, choice, and resilience. Don’t get left behind by your competition.
Future-proof your business communications today with Ringover.