You may have heard about the big switch off of analogue landlines in 2025, but have you heard of PSTN ‘Stop Sell’?
In this blog post, we look deeper into the end of the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) and what this means for your home or business.
What is the PSTN ‘stop sell?’
The PSTN (Public Switched Telephone Network) ‘stop sell’ is a policy by Openreach to halt the sale of analogue phone lines and Fibre-to-the-cabinet (FTTC) services in the UK.
Openreach is in the middle of its full-fibre rollout and has already connected 10 million premises and aims to connect 25 million by the end of December 2026.
The ultimate goal is to transition everyone in the UK to Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) lines, but this is a work in progress as many areas still lack this service.
You can check Openreach’s fibre availability here to see the status in your area.
Starting September 5, 2023, FTTC and ADSL broadband and phone line packages will no longer be available to new users if FTTP is available.
Existing FTTC or ADSL customers will have until December 2025 to switch to an FTTP package, if available.
Additionally, changes to existing legacy telephone infrastructure will also be restricted in FTTP areas, marking an end to the analogue era in the UK.
Why is Openreach switching off the PSTN
The existing Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) still relies on outdated copper cables, which are increasingly costly and complex to maintain.
As the demand for faster and more reliable connectivity grows among businesses and consumers, the copper-based system is rapidly becoming obsolete.
Openreach mandates that all UK providers transition to a fully digital, IP-based network over a fibre infrastructure.
Read our article on the Big Switch-Off for an in-depth look at this transition due 2025.
What does the PSTN ‘stop sell’ mean for me?
Starting 5 September 2023, you will no longer be able to switch to any PSTN-based telephone or broadband services if you’re in an area where the full-fibre (FTTP) rollout is complete.
If you are using PSTN-based telephone or broadband, you will need to upgrade your services by December 2025.
At AquaSwitch, you can make this transition seamless by switching providers before these deadlines.
Simply insert your postcode into our comparison tools to:
Are there any exceptions?
There are no exceptions to the PSTN ‘stop sell’ policy.
Once full-fibre is available in your area, you’ll be unable to switch to FTTC or ADSL broadband packages or add new lines or extra channels to your existing ISDN setup
When the final switch-off occurs in December 2025, your current services will be fully phased out.
At AquaSwitch, we offer assistance in transitioning both your business and home to full-fibre broadband and telephone services, making the switch seamless and timely.
What is the Priority Exchange programme, and will it be rolled out?
In preparation for the full-fibre transition by 2025, Openreach is implementing a phased “Priority Exchange Programme” across the UK.
To see if your local exchange is part of this programme, you can check the list on Openreach’s website.
New exchanges will be added to the rollout on a quarterly basis.
What do the order restrictions mean?
There’s no cause for concern regarding the PSTN ‘stop sell.’ If you’re in an area with full-fibre coverage, you won’t be able to switch to traditional broadband or telephone services after September 5, 2025.
Only FTTP broadband and VoIP telephone services will be available to you.
Get the latest business broadband deals using our business broadband comparison service to evaluate your options and make the transition effortlessly. Also, you can compare broadband deals with our home broadband comparison tool.
If you currently have an FTTC or ADSL broadband (and perhaps phone) package, you won’t be able to modify your service and must transition to full-fibre by December 2025.