Later this year, NBN will begin switching off business-grade copper-based ‘Special Services’ which will affect many Australian businesses. These Special Services are a set of telecommunication products which simultaneously use voice, video and data services.

On November 12th, a number of the estimated 200,000 Special Services will be cut off. These data connections using the older ULL copper-based networks will be switched off with no exemptions.

What are the implications?

For businesses still running on SHDSL or VDSL technologies, including voice, ERP systems and core business applications, the switch off will prevent these from running. By September 2019, all ISDN 2 and ISDN 30 services will be completely switched off. While that sounds like a long time away, many businesses who have not yet moved on from their copper-based network will have their existing infrastructure in need of upgrading or replacing.

NBN has warned businesses to avoid disruptions to business by planning the migration of their Ethernet Lite, Wholesale Business Digital Subscriber Lines (BDSL) and Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN) phone and internet lines to the new network, sooner rather than later. You can find a list of the affecting services and scheduled cut off dates on the NBN website.

What to do now

To prevent any disruptions to productivity, there are a number of things businesses can do to prepare for the switch off:

  • Identify which offices and sites will be affected and plan the date for their switch over to the NBN network
  • Review the bandwidth uses of all services at every site in your network and re-evaluate the design and architecture based on needs for today and for the future
  • Review the NBN options available to your business

Start planning

Although the switch off won’t be completed until September next year, it will take time to determine your business’s needs and to migrate across to the new NBN service. This will only take longer if you have multiple office locations across the country that will be affected. The switch off also provides the perfect opportunity to upgrade your services completely.

The NBN network is scheduled to be available to three quarters of Australians by mid-2019 and completed by 2020. For more information on the switch off, visit the NBN website.