As the full stop of the PTSN network draws closer, Unity covers the key info you’ll need to know to keep your organisation connected during the great withdrawal of 2025.

Openreach started its first WLR stop sell in December 2020. As well as the halting of new PSTN line rental products from nationwide exchanges, the date also saw the start of the 5-year withdrawal period. By 2025, Openreach will have completely closed the PTSN network. Currently throughout the UK exchanges are switching off, meaning any new or existing PSTN lines cannot be purchased. This is especially a concern for new or growing businesses that will require new telephones, internet lines, or alarms, for example.

What is the WLR Switch Off and why is it happening?

Ever since Openreach announced the WLR withdrawal back in 2017, Unity World has been speaking to our current customers about the steps they need to take to protect their businesses.

The entirety of the UK’s PTSN will be decommissioned by December 2025 as the old copper internet and telephone infrastructure in the UK will be replaced by modern, high-speed fibre cabling such as FTTP (Fibre to the Premises) and SoGEA. The new infrastructure provides a much faster, more stable connection, that requires much less long-term maintenance. However, it also means that all connections using these old copper lines will stop working. This includes CCTV, alarms, telephones, emergency systems, internet connections, and servers. 

Check out our live list here for the exchanges switching off in your area in the coming months.

What’s going to be affected?

The following services are going to be impacted by the withdrawal of WLR. Any of the following in your organisations communications environment or premises infrastructure will need replacing by 2025:

  • PSTN Lines
  • Analogue Lines
  • Lift Lines
  • ISDN 2
  • ISDN 30
  • Broadband services ( ADSL 2+, Max 400, FTTC)

There are roughly around 15 million premises (both business and residential) that will be affected and so moving over quickly is essential to not getting stuck at the back of the queue.

What should I do to protect my business?

It’s vital that all businesses perform an audit whether themselves or from an ISP. You’ll need to identify which components in your communications infrastructure will need to be replaced.

A lot of organisations and businesses still heavily rely on outdated analogue copper lines and it isn’t just for voice and internet connectivity. Lift lines and alarm systems, for example, are often overseen when considering the implications of the WLR withdrawal.

We’re here to help.

Unity is fully aware of the impact the WLR Switch Off will have on businesses and organisations everywhere. We have expert guidance and advice available to support both the public and private sectors through the withdrawal. You can check out our list of PSTN exchanges switching off in the coming months to see how it will affect your business. 

We’ve already helped our customers get fibre ready and ensure that the withdrawal isn’t a hindrance to their ability to deliver in 2022. VoIP, FTTP, SoGEA, and Leased Lines are all perfectly viable options for businesses like yours to keep them going and growing.

Give us a call today and our friendly team can support and help wherever you are in the switch-over process. Be it for an informal chat to find out more info, or to discuss replacement products, we’re always there and ready when you need us.


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