The Great Switch Off: Everything You Need to Know About BT Openreach’s Business Closure

Whilst 2025 might seem far away, we urge you to look back an equal amount of years – how long ago does 2017 feel? Not long ago, at all, right? 

In the world of business, time definitely feels like liquid, and something that’s still a few years off can impact how you need to act. By December 2025, the traditional analogue phone network (or PTSN) will reach the end of its life and give way to new technologies. 

Here’s everything you need to know about the “Great Switch Off.” 

Who is Openreach?

 
Openreach is a fixed-line telecoms infrastructure company, owned by BT Group plc. If you aren’t tech-savvy, this essentially means they own the copper and fibre wire cables that connect homes (and businesses) to phone and broadband. 

What do they do?


Openreach runs the UK’s main telecoms network infrastructure that is used by over 650+ internet and broadband providers. They do not sell phone, broadband, or TV services directly to customers – and that’s why you might not have heard of them! They are very much a “behind the scenes” company that keeps “Britain connected.” 

Why are they closing?

BT Openreach announced in 2019 that “they are closing the copper wire telephone network across the UK for homes and businesses”. They are replacing all networks with fibre optics, and stopping the ADSL and ISDN services to improve download speeds across the country. Whilst this in of itself doesn’t sound so scary – there are still options, right? – as with any huge change in the UK’s traditional infrastructure, it’s important businesses prepare themselves.

What actions have Openreach already taken towards closure?

Their closure announcement was only the first step. Then they started rolling out fibre networks, and aim to be completely finished by 2025.

How will Openreach’s closure affect me and my business?

A service provider closing could affect any number of businesses, and the first step you need to take is to check what service you are on and start looking for alternatives. Whilst Openreach’s closure seems very far off into the future, time will pass quickly and you don’t want to be left stranded. Alternatives include VoIP (which we sell) and newer broadband lines.

Similarly, businesses who regularly contact their customers via phone lines (and have for years) might need to make sure their customers aren’t making a switch themselves. In the run-up to 2025, keep up-to-date with contact details and make sure they alert you if they’re changing their phone number – so you don’t lose out on vital sales.

For more information about how Openreach could affect you, and how you can purchase new internet-based phone lines: reach out to us for all your telecom needs. 

Book a discovery call or ring 0113 531 5400 to see how we can unlock your company’s potential, together.

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