What services are affected?
Basically, anything currently using a copper line. The easiest way to comprehend the extent of this major project is to consider that every single Openreach service utilising copper lines will be affected. The most apparent services are analogue telephone lines (PSTN) and digital ISDN lines but it doesn’t stop there. It’s not just about telephone services. Any service that uses this infrastructure will also be impacted.
· Analogue voice telephone services and any service that use these lines including Dial up devices, fax, alarm systems, modem, building management systems, lift lines, PDQ machines.
· ISDN 2e and ISDN 30e lines which are mainly used by phone systems.
· Broadband services that run over an analogue telephone line e.g. ADSL and also FTTC Fibre Broadband
What is happening and when?
Openreach will be switching off services at each exchange in turn. The first stage is to announce a “stop sell” date for each exchange. After this date no new affected services can be ordered and changes to existing services, no matter how minor, cannot be made.
There are already over 200 exchanges that will be in the Stop Sell phase by January 2022. Two years after the stop sell date all services cease at that exchange.
National ‘stop sell’ date
September 2023 has been announced as the national ‘stop sell’ date – the point at which all exchanges will have reached their stop sell date. The project completes in 2025 as the last exchanges reach their shutdown date. The big analogue switch off project ends in 2025. From this date its all-IP or nothing.