2020 is set to be a decade of transformation for tech and telecoms in the UK and around the world. In the back end of 2019, we saw the launch of 5G technology that can offer around 5x the speeds of the UK average broadband connection as well as billions of pounds worth of investment from network providers such as CityFibre and Openreach in deploying next-generation full fibre infrastructure across the country.
The UK telecoms industry is driven by connectivity and technologies that enable it. As network providers continue rolling out full fibre technology, and faster connectivity becomes widely available across the UK, we’re likely to see a dramatic change in how business and individuals operate and shift in attitude for digitally enabled services.
Full-Fibre for All
Full-fibre deployment will ramp up rapidly over the next twelve months particularly with the UK Government’s ambitious plans. By March 2020, the Government has pledged to extend the reach of “superfast broadband” networks to cover at least 97% of the UK. By 2025, gigabit capable FTTP/H services could cover 15 million premises and nationwide by 2033.
Currently, the build has been focused on existing infrastructure and urban cities. Increased Government grants and support is likely to expand into rural and more remote places where average peak-time download speed greater than 30Mbps was lower in rural areas (44%) than in urban areas (61%). Openreach have already begun Fibre to the Premises (FTTP) trials in small UK villages and recently added 227 rural UK areas to its FTTP rollout. Other providers are likely to follow suit.
Always-On, Always Fast
The growth of 5G and full fibre technology will mean that individuals across the country will expect and be used to much faster speeds whether they are at home, at work or out and about. EE, the first operator to deploy 5G in the UK, expects to provide 5G connectivity in 45 cities and town. In 2020, O2 announced the roll-out of 5G services in 13 new locations across the UK.
As 5G rollout continues to pick up pace, customers will be used to connectivity that is fast, reliable and easily accessible. That means no matter where they are, they will want to access the services they use everyday without disruption. In a work environment, employers will be challenged to offer ultrafast fibre connections that enable its employees to work just as quickly and productively.
Up in the Cloud
Cloud technology has advanced ten-fold over the past years. Security has strengthened, disruption has been minimised and moving to the cloud has been highly cost-effective for businesses and individuals. For many businesses, services such as Office 365, virtual desktops and even phone systems now run on cloud technology. It lets you access your services virtually anywhere, and work with anyone across the globe, all with in-built security and resilience.
In 2020, we’re likely to see increasing number of businesses, both large and small, move to the cloud and benefit from the simplicity, cost-efficiencies and reliability it offers.
VoIP over ISDN
By 2020, BT have stated that it will stop taking any new ISDN orders with the aim of completely switching-off its ISDN network by 2025.
ISDN is a circuit-switched telephone network system that allows both voice and data services to be delivered over digital lines. When launched in 1986, the ISDN lines offered the fastest speeds available of 128Kb/s. Today, businesses and individuals can get up to 1000000Kb/s (1Gb/s).
Modern voice solutions such as VoIP, does not rely on outdated copper lines. Instead, it uses an active Internet connection to make voice and video calls. VoIP offers a vast number of benefits including reduced line rental costs, live call availability data and a scalable and flexible cloud phone solution.
Fixed landlines are rapidly becoming a thing of the past. People increasingly have access to a smartphone and prefer to use their personal devices. Internet providers are likely to offer more Internet-only packages as traditional landlines are moved to IP-based systems.
This is an exciting time for all in the industry. Providers and resellers will be challenged to offer smarter, simpler and more efficient products that deliver real benefits to the end user. As connectivity continues to grow, businesses and individuals have an opportunity to work smarter and more productively while reducing their overheads.
To find out how we’re preparing for a better UK telecoms future, please get in touch here.