As major upgrades continue to shape the industry, CSL is futureproofing the landscape and supporting installers along the way.
The UK’s Telephone Network Upgrade will affect anything that currently plugs into the existing analogue telephone wall sockets, including fire and security signalling systems. The project is well underway and the impact is already being seen at premises nationwide.
Essentially, service providers such as BT, TalkTalk and Sky can move their existing customers from analogue PSTN to Digital Voice at any given time. It is however vital that installers are not working towards this 2025 deadline but are instead staying focused on taking action and upgrading their base now.
Following the initial trial that started in 2020, Openreach has continued announcing ‘stop sell’ phases. The latest tranche of telephone exchange upgrades to enhanced IP service was recently announced, bringing the total number of currently upgraded exchanges to 182 – impacting up to 2.1 million premises across the UK.
The number of affected exchanges is beginning to ramp up at its most significant pace yet as we move ever closer to 2025 when all analogue reliant systems will need to have already been switched to a fully digital service. End users are already receiving notifications in the post about this, placing pressure on installers to offer suitable alternatives.
For a simple and futureproofed solution, CSL has created an All IP Hub where installers can discover their range of upgrade options. As part of the All IP Hub, they have provided an exchange map where installers can also see all telephone exchanges affected by the project.
We are working with installers, ARCs and the wider industry to ensure all systems are futureproofed or upgraded as part of the project. CSL has been busy supporting installers with their swap-out schedules as part of our leading Upgrade Programme. This programme has been running successfully since 2010 and has helped hundreds of installers replace thousands of connections over the last 12 years. Our step-by-step plan enables installers to easily navigate each obstacle throughout the upgrade process. What’s more, our latest all IP upgrade options come with specific products and connection costs to maximise options.
Part of the DualCom Pro 2 Range, GradeShift Pro 2 is the evolution of the widely popular GradeShift Pro. CSL’s dual-path signalling solution utilises a combination of two radio paths or one radio and one LAN path to signal an alarm. Each SIM operates on an independent network from the other for total resilience.
DigiAir Pro 2, also part of the DualCom Pro 2 Range, is a single-path signalling solution that utilises a 4G radio path or a LAN path to signal an alarm. The radio variant also comes with a standby SIM as a backup to safeguard a system. Both solutions are compatible with CSL Live and the My Base App. Since its launch in 2019, the DualCom Pro Range has been trusted in over 100,000 professional installations across Europe.
The brand new MiniAir 2 has been specifically designed as the ideal mobile upgrade for Digital Communicators. Older PSTN-reliant signalling systems need to be upgraded as part of the UK’s All IP Project. MiniAir 2 provides a cost-effective, future-proofed, radio signalling solution. It is a single-path signalling solution that utilises a 4G/LTE-M path to signal an alarm from a protected premises to an ARC. It comes with a standby SIM as a backup to safeguard your system, if the active SIM fails.
Both SIMs operate on an independent network from the other for total resilience. It is designed for both residential and commercial premises as an affordable upgrade from a digital communicator to secure signalling.
Moreover, utilising these upgrade options gives installers the ability to connect to legacy and new control panels for Upload Download capabilities, remote servicing and full diagnostics. CSL is conscious that more businesses are feeling the pressure to demonstrate ways in which they are taking responsibility to reduce their carbon footprint. CSL recognises that having the ability to connect to alarm systems remotely is essential for installers to be able to take the necessary steps to be greener.
Another challenge that most sectors are facing post-pandemic is that people are viewing connectivity differently. As a company, we are seeing lots more unique critical connectivity cases outside our core heritage business of fire and security. As we’ve delved into this new area, we’ve found more and more examples where critical connectivity can enhance existing solutions. As we grow into markets that closely align with fire and security, we are seeing more and more similarities where both technology and installations are very similar.
We aim to drive growth in a broader IoT market through our managed solutions that are scalable whilst also still being affordable. However, we also see opportunities for installers in these new verticals, including retail, transport and logistics. CSL takes the complexity out of adopting communications solutions, handling all diagnostic checks, configurations and service continuity.
Atlas Fire & Security
Established in 1993, Atlas Fire & Security are a passionate and customer-focused organisation, based in Birkenhead. The team at Atlas are aware of the upcoming challenges posed by the UK’s All IP upgrade project. Managing Director, John Piggott, saw first-hand how end users will be impacted by these changes.
“In the first week of October 2021, I received a letter from BT to advise that they would be upgrading my home landline to the new digital service. I was also aware that my local exchange was going into its ‘stop-sell’ phase from 13 October, meaning that any changes to my service would automatically move to IP as older options would no longer be available.”
Like many others, Piggott presumed the switchover would be done within the next 12 months following the ‘stop-sell’ phase beginning and that he would be given a good notice period of the upgrade date. Ultimately, this didn’t happen.
“I then received an email from BT on 19 October (six days after the stop-sell phase began) to advise me that the upgrade to my service would happen just seven days later, on 26 October. Sure enough, this all went ahead as planned, and from this date, my PSTN service was switched off and replaced with IP.”
Luckily for Piggott, he was aware of the implications of this switch and was able to plan for his own alarm system to be upgraded to the latest 4G solution from CSL. But, many end users will not be aware that this change impacts their alarm system and may not notify their installer company ahead of the change. This could cause lots of issues for installers, with emergency callouts requested as the system goes into fail.
“Having now seen for myself how home and business owners will be impacted by these changes, we are proactively encouraging all our customers to have their systems upgraded. Not only does this futureproof their system and allow us to provide them with a better service, but it also avoids any potential issues caused by the All IP switchover.”
For more information on the latest exchanges impacted by All IP, please visit: https://www.csl-group.com/uk/all-ip/exchanges/
This article was originally published in the April edition of Security Journal UK. To read your FREE digital edition, click here.