We'll be moving from the traditional analogue phone network, known as the Public Switched Telephone Network, or PSTN, to newer digital technologies by December 2025.
The newer digital technologies will allow you to make your calls over the internet, using Voice over Internet Protocol, or VoIP. You won’t need to change your telephone number and most phones will work with the new technology.
For more information, read our FAQs below.
Not yet. Your provider will contact you with more information at the appropriate time.
We're upgrading the network over the next 5 years, and aim to have the network fully upgraded by December 2025.
We are in regular contact with Ofcom and the Office of the Telecommunications Adjudicator (OTA2) about the upgrade of our phone and broadband network and we’ve shared our plans with them.
You may need to connect your phone differently. Your phone could plug directly into a router, or an engineer may need to reconnect your wall socket.
If you don’t use broadband today, you will need to get a router so that calls can be made over the new technology. This will be provided by your phone provider. It should not affect the price you pay for your services and it will not mean that you have to sign up to a broadband service.
Old corded phones are powered by your local telephone exchange. This will change, so if there’s a power cut you may have to do something different to make home phone calls during that time. There’s more advice on this further below.
If you have anything connected to your phone line, like a care alarm or security alarm, you will need to check if they will work over the new technology. There’s been a lot of work between industries in the background and most modern devices should be compatible, but if you do use one of these devices it’s important that you speak with the company that supplied it to you.
No. You won’t need to change your telephone number and most phones will work with the new technology.
The old technology still has its own inbuilt power supply, but the new network will need to be powered from your home electricity. If there is a power cut this will mean – just as if you have a cordless phone today – that you will not be able to make or receive calls.
Most people in the UK have a mobile phone, so the advice is just as you do today, use this as a backup in case there is a power cut.
There are solutions available. If you’re about to move to the new service, please let your home phone provider know if any of the following apply:
· Live somewhere where there is little or no mobile coverage
· you are a vulnerable customer and rely on your home phone
· you don’t have a mobile phone.
If you plug other devices into your phone socket, like fax machines, healthcare alarms, burglar alarms and security systems and text-relay phones, these will also not work over the phone line in a power cut. It’s really important that you tell your home phone provider and also the company that supplied you with the device that plugs into the phone line so you know:
· Whether the device will work in a power cut
· whether that network and device will suit your own particular needs.
Ofcom has published some guidance which may be helpful.
Protecting vulnerable customers is an absolute priority for us. We’re working with the Communication Providers to identify vulnerable customers early on. We're also partnering with groups such as Citizens Advice, Help the Aged and Age UK to raise awareness of the change and make sure they have all the information and support they need.
We’re also working with the providers and manufacturers of equipment such as alarms and care pendants to make sure that these critical services are unaffected as we upgrade our network.
We’re talking to the providers of Critical National Infrastructure, the emergency services and industry associations to talk about our upgrade programme.