This article was originally published in UC Today 26 October, 2022’s modular platform is ideal for analogue-based systems and devices migrating to digital communication technologies

All over Europe, legacy analogue telephone networks are being phased out. The UK will switch its PSTN and ISDN systems off in 2025 – and that will be a huge change. Old cellular networks are also being turned off. According to Cullen International’s latest European benchmark, MNOs in 22 countries have completed or have plans to switch off their legacy 2G or 3G networks.

For the communications systems and devices that depend on analogue networks, this is a big challenge. It could mean ripping and replacing old systems involving thousands of existing user devices. That process needs to start right away. It takes time to test and implement new products and systems, and it’s expensive. Many of the communications services that still depend on analogue networks are for alarms and security systems. They can’t afford to fail.

Is the switch-off a compelling event for a move?

A lot of investment has been made in these devices and communication systems. Even though they rely on an ageing analogue network, they are not broken and continue to function well. However, they are getting costly to run and maintain and offer limited scalability. In addition, the people who designed and built them may have moved on by now. Finding anyone who knows how to manage and maintain them will become increasingly difficult.

Even so, there are plenty of good reasons to update current systems. A modern, all-IP and cloud-based approach will bring greater cost efficiency, improved reliability, enhanced security, elastic scaling and a shorter time to market.

The PSTN switch-off might be the compelling event that will finally drive businesses with systems and devices that run on analogue networks to make the change.

Avoiding the need to start over

“Shutting down the analogue networks is a natural step when you already have faster and more reliable digital networks. But it brings challenges for those providing communication services based on these networks”, said Gunnar Reinholdsen, Co-Founder

Digital technologies use a different type of signalling, something which impacts the communication heavily.

Alarm services for care homes, elevators, intercom systems, and the security sector are just a few examples where the switch-off must be addressed – and the businesses that are affected need to act before the old networks are turned off.

“Most solutions vendors are telling them that they will have to ‘throw away their old devices and start afresh’”, said Reinholdsen. ”A lot of these businesses do not have the time or the budget to do that.”

From legacy to the cloud

That’s not what is telling them. The company’s comms platform supports a number of analogue protocols, and its efficient, modular functionality means that providers can take only the components they need to deliver the required service. It has open and flexible APIs that enable legacy systems to be smoothly integrated with the latest communications technology.

“There are many organisations that would like to extend the lifetime of their devices and systems and the investments they have already made”, said Reinholdsen.

At the same time, they accept that they need to modernise and make use of new communications technologies. We are ready to help them do both. To protect and extend their ROI by migrating their existing solution and take a step into the cloud and start building systems using modern technology. You don’t have to scrap the old one and build something completely new in the cloud. We can provide support for devices and systems that use analogue protocols, so that you can migrate at the pace that you want.

What this means is that companies building alarm, security or intercom systems that depend on analogue technologies such as PSTN, 2G or 3G today can protect their legacy investment and start to modernise and enjoy all the benefits that newer, faster digital technologies bring. They can have more flexibility and scalability and pave the way for the future by building on what they have already got.

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