BT have announced that 2025 will see the retirement of all ISDN services within the UK.  Contact Westcom Networks today to understand how we can help you navigate this transition and take advantages of the cost savings which using SIP trunks can deliver.

Telephone box, SIP trunks

What is ISDN?

In generate use since the 1980’s, ISDN has been the traditional method used by business to make telephone calls.  A digital service, ISDN comes in two flavours offering up to either two or 30 channels (phone lines) over which phone calls can be made or received.  Widely used across the world, if you have a business telephone system then there is a good change that you have an ISDN line of one flavour or another.

However much like analogue TV, newer technology which can offer greater flexibility and functionality has become mainstream and is quickly making ISDN redundant.

As high speed internet becomes the norm for business and the cost of providing and supporting ISDN goes up,  there has never been a better time to make the move.

What is SIP?

Sometimes referred to as voice over IP (VOIP), SIP trunks are a method of connecting your telephone or telephone system to the outside world via a standard internet connection.  SIP ‘trunks’ can support multiple lines and telephone numbers and offer additional functionality over ISDN, typically for a lower cost.

Current telephone numbers can normally be easily ported over from ISDN to SIP to ensure continuity for business.  Many SIP trunk providers exist providing a highly competitive marketplace, but as a result a often baffling range of options.

How Westcom Networks can help you to make the move (and the savings!)

Westcom Networks has a long, successful track record of providing solutions to the public and private sectors to ‘SIP enable existing telephone systems’.  A number of hospitals have turned to Westcom to help with their transition from ISDN to SIP without the cost and complexity of replacing their telephone system.

For those who are looking to coincide this move with expanding, adding more functionality or replacing a traditional telephone system, Westcom recommends the IP Cortex platform which offers the ability to support both ISDN and SIP without licences or complex set-up.

Finally, Westcom Networks isn’t a SIP trunk provider directly.  This means that we are well placed to offer independent advice on the best product and service available.  Contact Westcom today for more information and some free advice on your best options.

Featured Case Study


Award winning commercial legal firm selects high availability ipcortex VoIP solution to deliver flexibility, functionality and resilience

The challenge

Shulmans previous phone system supported a mix of analogue, digital and IP lines, and was not even using basic facilities like voicemail and caller display.

The system also had numerous different handsets and was extremely unreliable, as IT Manager Ross MacIntyre explains:

Every two or three weeks we’d have an issue that needed fixing, so it was a real pain. We were using a third party supplier for support, but even though we paid a maintenance fee they were always trying to sell us extra things to fix issues! Having all the different lines and handsets was also a concern, as every time someone moved we had to physically re-patch a phone in, so it was a bit of a nightmare. It was obvious that we needed to change as the functionality was severely lacking, and I knew from previous experience and from research that there was so much more we could get out of a new phone system.

What we did

A full RFP process was carried out, but Ross also spoke to contacts at Westcom Networks, which supplies Shulmans’ firewall solution, who suggested that he consider including ipcortex in the process.

The new solution has 115 extensions and uses Polycom IP450 handsets with HD Voice. Most notably, it actually uses two VoIPCortex Pro IP PBXs which are set up in a high availability configuration.
Ross and the team started setting up the new handsets the week before the switch-over, as well as holding awareness sessions in the boardroom.

People were using old system until 6pm on the Friday, then we swapped everything over at the weekend and when people came in on the Monday they were on the new system. It was great, it just worked and was completely seamless. The user base saw the leap forward we’ve made with all the new functionality and they were suitably impressed – there was certainly appetite for it within the business.

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