BT has made the bold claim that, within the next ten years, all of its voice customers currently using ISDN will be moved onto the IP network.
Speculation over when and if BT would turn off its ISDN services has been rife in recent months. Now, BT Group CEO Gavin Patterson has sought to put the
issue to bed, by claiming the End of Life will come by 2025 - or at least that's the goal. Whilst this deadline may seem a long way off, many analysts
have noted that such a large-scale changeover would be unachievable in that time, especially for those in rural areas.
Future lies with SIP – but is a 10-year transition long enough?
Making the announcement, Patterson stated that BT's future lay in a single IP (SIP) core network, which would replace all legacy networks and platforms.
He stopped short of saying it would definitely happen in that timeframe, though, claiming instead that it was BT's goal for all voice customers to
"be served using an IP with a premises solution" and migrate away from the traditional telephony platform by 2025.
For customers, this would make for a seamless experience across all devices, whether they are at their desks or taking calls on a smartphone away from
Yet the task facing BT is a huge one, as some 3.2 million ISDN channels were active in the UK back in August 2013 (although not all of these are on BT's
network). This is just one of the reasons why analysts have voiced their concern for such a short timescale.
Matt Townend of Illume Research was among those raising concerns. He noted that the process will take a lot longer than many expect, so work would need
to begin in earnest as soon as possible if the 2025 deadline is to be met. Townend added that BT would also need to act quickly in order to retain
its customer base and prevent them from looking elsewhere.
Ignite Commercial Operations Manager, Andy Portlock added:
"Whilst ten years might appear to be a long time, I'm not convinced that it's achievable for all customers to migrate from ISDN to SIP by the deadline set. Some clients would find it difficult to install the required connectivity in remote locations, and the additional cost to upgrade would certainly be prohibitive.
The other consideration is that early adopters to SIP are generally using ISDN as a backup circuit for business continuity and resilience."
Whilst Ignite understands the benefit of SIP and is actively migrating clients wherever this service is viable, the business continues to support and offer
consultation around the best technology fit for each of its clients’ individual needs and circumstances.
To discuss your requirements with an Ignite account manager call 0333 006 8060