Openreach launches consultation with CPs and industry groups ahead of digital switchover

Openreach has launched a consultation with CPs and industry groups ahead of its transition from analogue telephony to digital voice services in 2025. The consultation, which runs until 27th July 2018, aims to help prepare its 600-plus CPs for the withdrawal of wholesale products and services that run over the traditional analogue telephone network.

Before the end of May 2018 Openreach will hold a series of events at venues in London, Birmingham, Leeds and Edinburgh to explain the consultation to customers and industry groups.

Openreach will also garner feedback on a transitional product - the Single Order Transitional Access Product (SOTAP) - which will enable consumers and businesses that are currently connected via traditional copper lines to order a pure broadband service which doesn't rely on the analogue PSTN platform.

CPs will in turn be able to supply a digital voice service over the top.

Mark Logan, Product Director at Openreach, said: "As our customers demand faster and more reliable connectivity, we've accelerated our plans to build more Fibre to the Premises (FTTP) broadband technology across Britain, and we expect to reach three million premises by the end of 2020."

Over the last year, Openreach has been trialling two ‘broadband-only' services that are due to launch later this year. Single Order GEA (SOGEA) and Single Order Gfast (SOGfast) both offer similar connectivity to existing FTTC services but without the need for a bundled analogue voice product.

The PSTN supports a number of Openreach's wholesale products including: Wholesale Line Rental; Integrated Services Digital Network; Local Loop Unbundling Shared Metallic Path Facility and Sub-Loop Unbundling Shared Metallic Path Facility.

The consultation launch events are planned for:
• 21st May 2018 – Birmingham
• 22nd May 2018 – Leeds
• 24th May 2018 – London
• 30th May 2018 – Edinburgh

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