Copper v Digital Lines – Whats it all about?

What’s happening to the Copper lines?

I love the good old copper line. Reliable, trustworthy all over the country and about 150 years old – What! that old. Yes that old! But does that mean it’s past it and no longer viable?

Well some would say yes. Openreach are no longer installing copper/ PSTN lines and all the main carriers are forcing you to go digital. It appears we have no choice but to accept it’s demise.

But guess what – they’re not getting rid of it. They will continue to use the majority of the existing infrastructure. They are just switching off the voice traffic bit.

Many of the telegraph poles up and down the country, the underground ducts and all other elements of the vast telecommunication network created as far back as 1888, are still required to deliver broadband.

So what does digital mean?

When you are told your line is going digital it means they are switching off the voice element of your copper line and sending calls over your broadband supply. Known as VoIP calling (Voice over Internet Provider/Protocol), Cloud calls, IP calls and a few other acronyms..  

If you have full fibre optic already there is no voice traffic supplied with it. You have to have VoIP or rely on your mobile phone service

Obviously its not that simple if you have poor internet. Poor mobile signal,  or an internet provider that’s not prepared to be flexible. They may not be able to move you to a service that can give you what you want when it comes to telephone calls.

Who can supply my calls?

You can choose who handles your calls. It does not have to be your broadband supplier.

VoIP calling is now second to none and here at Cloud & Telecom Services you get so much more than just a call.  

Extra features such as voice mail to email, call recording, divert to mobile, free mobile App, low cost calls and much more all come as standard. 

All features are available to both domestic and business customers. We also supply broadband – the whole package.

Will my line really be switched off  in 2025?

The ‘great switch off’  is scheduled for December 2025 when all Copper lines are being decommissioned for calls. When this very brave, some would say foolhardy, edict was decided it was assumed that all properties up and down the country would be happy to lose their land line and have access to a great mobile signal and full fibre. It ain’t going to happen.

Openreach are working flat out and are finding alternative solutions to supply the fibre,  but still wont be ready to accommodate all by 2025.

Mobile companies are still falling short of full coverage for the country and the independent broadband suppliers such as Gigaclear and City Fibre are filling in some of the gaps but they don’t always supply a VoIP service and when they do you only get one line.

I think the switch off is likely to be extended, particularly in remote rural areas and even some inner cities where they have very poor mobile signal and still only have access to ADSL.  The cost of installing fibre optic being vast and labour intensive.

Can I keep my home Phone and number?

Yes you can. The removal of voice traffic from your copper line will not affect everyone, not all of us want a fixed landline. The use of mobiles is the standard for most and the desire for a fixed phone in the house is getting less and less.  But if your mobile signal is poor you may still want a fixed home phone. If that’s the case we can help. We supply a free adaptor to our customers allowing them continued use of their existing analogue phones and keep their old landline number to boot.  For as long as they want.  

Can I keep my Business PBX system and analogue telephones?

Yes you can. We can supply a multi line adaptor allowing you to keep your existing phones and set up.  No need for additional capital expenditure and you keep your telephone number, one you may have had for years and may otherwise lose.  

Our Aim

Our aim is to supply the best telecom solution for you and the best broadband available to you. 

If you want to know more give us a call or drop us a line. Contact us

In my next post I’ll outline the different broadband types, what they all mean, how you can find out what you’ve got and what they offer going forward.