The future of Telecommunications is coming, and it’s happening faster than you think, in fact for some across the world it already has. Circa 2027 the copper twisted-pair cables that connect every home and office in the UK to their local telephone exchange and which have been around since 1911, will be superseded by Fibre Optic, or Full Fibre (FTTP) technology. Prior to this, the Analogue switch-off is planned for 2025, which will retire the analogue telephone network used for calls.
The UK's impending transition to super-fast, fibre optic cables is going to be an incredible undertaking. Imagine the chaos and traffic if every home had their own coming in for a visit? This planned change could take anywhere from one day up to six weeks depending on how far you are located from existing telephone poles or any other obstructions that might stop workmen from reaching certain areas.
Many businesses across the UK rely on the network connections that are supplied via copper cables, for example, DSL and FTTC, these services will all need to switch over to fibre-based networks, and soon all businesses will have either upgraded or replaced their outdated copper wiring with newer technology.
This transition includes local authorities, GP surgeries, care homes, pharmacies, and hundreds of thousands of retail shops. In some areas, OpenReach has announced they'll stop selling products that use this outdated infrastructure type by January 2022—inevitably everyone will have to switch to fibre or mobile by 2027 at the latest. It sounds far away, but for some, these changes are already happening.
If you run a small retail shop, you might experience minimal disruption. Your till, your card machine or terminal would not work during the switch,
If you are a larger organisation with different branches across multiple locations this is where it gets a little more complicated; you may ask questions such as:
If you don't know the answer to these questions, then you should consider getting advice to help you review and assess your assets and prepare the most appropriate migration plan for minimal disruption.
The benefits of the move to fibre with the copper Switch-Off will be substantial – faster Gigabit speeds compared to superfast broadband with the ability to stream 4K and 8K video, lifelike video conferencing, and many others. Reliability will also be improved as countries like Estonia, and Sweden, which have already adopted this switch, reported a 70% reduction in cable faults between Copper and Fibre – so no more buffering internet when it rains which can occur for those with old copper cables in their street.
The changes to come are going to be revolutionary! Cables in the street will see a major shift over the next few years, and businesses need awareness about how their current networks can take advantage of these updates.