Within any technology sector, new phrases often become widespread without being accompanied by a clear explanation, and telecoms is no different.

We want to demystify the jargon, and take the time to properly explain what the Big Switch Off and stop sell mean; whether you’ve heard of them or not, it’s very likely they will have a huge impact on communications across your business.

What is the Big Switch Off?

Copper lines have been the backbone of communications infrastructure across the country for almost 150 years. Since its inception, this technology has been a boon for UK businesses, enabling them to connect with prospects, customers, staff and suppliers. However, technology evolves. These lines have become expensive to maintain, and are now holding back the next wave of 21st century connectivity.

As such, this outdated network is being retired in a process known as the Big Switch Off. The Big Switch Off will complete in December 2025, at which point any services utilising copper lines will cease to operate.

Who will be affected by the Big Switch Off?

Every business still using copper-based phone lines for calls or internet connectivity will be affected, and will need to switch to newer technology to avoid loss of service.

What is stop sell?

Stop sell is the point at which older copper-based services on an exchange can no longer be purchased or modified.

Although retiring such a huge component of the national communications infrastructure is necessary, it’s a complicated procedure. In order to minimise the impact on the millions of people affected, a multi-step plan has been put in place.

As part of this process, hundreds of exchanges across the UK have already become stop sell, but perhaps the most important stage in the Big Switch Off is the national stop sell. This occurs on 5th September 2023, and is the point at which all UK exchanges become stop sell.

Why do I need to take action now?

Although copper services will continue to operate until the end of 2025, we’ve already seen businesses being operationally impacted by stop sell as it gradually rolls out across the UK, increasing project budgets and extending timelines. Failing to act now could reduce your options, increase disruption and result in higher costs.

What action should I take?

You need to a make a plan now to upgrade from copper phone lines to modern communications technology.

Finding and implementing the right solution for your business is difficult and time-consuming. With a combined experience of over one hundred years in the telecommunications industry, we will do all of that for you, ensuring you have the right technology to meet your needs. No extra work, no extra worry. If you’re not sure what kind of telephone lines you’re using, don’t worry, we can check that for you too.

In addition to ensuring you avoid loss of service from the Big Switch Off, upgrading offers a range of benefits to internal and external communications, business processes and customer experience, including:

  • Better call quality and cost reduction with VoIP (Voice over IP) calls
  • Greater staff mobility with effortless number transfer, redirect and hot desking
  • A future-proof solution which expands and can even move with your company

To review your communications systems so you’re ready for the Big Switch Off, speak to one of our telecommunications experts now, on 0800 4700 007 or email sales@scgtogether.com.