Phasing out landlines by 2025: how could this impact people affected by dementia?

HarrietD

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Apr 29, 2014
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London
By 2025 all homes will have their landline switched over to Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP). VoIP is a technology that allows you to make voice calls using a broadband internet connection instead of a regular (or analogue) phone line. Your telephone provider will support you with this change, free of charge.

How do you think this could impact people living with dementia, and their families and carers?

Our Research and Influencing team would like to use your comments in this thread to highlight risks and potential harm to industry leaders. Specifically, they intend to push for the highest level of support to people affected by dementia at all stages of this switchover.

Thanks everyone :)
 

Shedrech

Volunteer Moderator
Dec 15, 2012
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Yorkshire
I didn't know about this ... will have to look up how this affects me
given that many people with dementia 'go back in time' to well before the digital age, this may be awkward, unless the 'handset' to use the service can look like, or even be, a landline phone, and the one that is currently in use ... I hope the service providers are going to be contacting ALL households to make this clear

@nitram any chance of you explaining what this is .... it means nothing to me
 

Veritas

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Jun 15, 2020
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The obvious issue is when the internet goes down - which it regularly does even in cities, let alone in the countryside - the approach assumes that people will be able to use mobiles instead, which is not an assumption I'd care to make. I've a little experience of current VoIP technology and it is by no means as reliable or user-friendly as the purveyors would have you believe. Significant improvements will need to be made for this changeover to be acceptable, and It isn't just people with dementia who will find this change hard to assimilate.
 

Jaded'n'faded

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Jan 23, 2019
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High Peak
I think the rush towards digital everything is extremely bad for many people, not just those with dementia. All sorts of assumptions are made about 1) what access to tech platforms people might have, 2) what level of ability people might have and 3) whether people should be forced to go digital even if they don't want to. What happened to choice? Just as it is assumed everyone has a photo ID. (I do not and it has caused me considerable problems in the past year.)

But I'd also like to know more about VoIP please! What if you have a landline but no internet connection - will you be forced to have one and pay for it?
 

nitram

Registered User
Apr 6, 2011
23,404
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North Manchester
Some info here and here

Basically in Oct 2025 BT will switch off the copper telephone network, all calls will have to be made using VOIP (voice over internet protocol), everybody will need either an enabled router or an ATA (analogue telephone adapter) connected to broadband to provide a socket for landline phones to be plugged into, phones making wireless connection with more facilities will also be available as will the facility to use a mobile connected to your broadband connection.

Currently people get their broadband in one of three ways, copper all the way to the exchange, fibre to a roadside cabinet with copper to the exchange (FTTN), fibre all the way to the exchange (FTTH), all of these will continue to work.
In parallel to the withdrawal of PTSN (public switched telephone network) BT are increasing the ability to receive FTTH with the ultimate aim of removing all roadside cabinets.

There will be cheap internet services with very low bandwidth for VOIP only.

The ability to make emergency calls during a power cut has to be maintained, in areas where there is no mobile signal a mains powered BBU (battery backup unit) with a minimum life of one hour will have to be provided, providers may be forced to provide basic mobiles.

There are potential pitfalls when moving to VOIP and changes ISP which could result in loss of your landline number, all services except FTTP currently are tied to this number, FTTP is not you have to ensure that the number is available for VOIP.

I'll post in a bit about my plan to achieve this and separate my phone number so I have control of it not the ISP, similar to using email address other than name@isp.co.uk
 
Last edited:

Jaded'n'faded

Registered User
Jan 23, 2019
2,030
0
High Peak
Some info here and here

Basically in Oct 2025 BT will switch off the copper telephone network, all calls will have to be made using VOIP (voice over internet protocol), everybody will need either an enabled router or an ATA (analogue telephone adapter) connected to broadband to provide a socket for landline phones to be plugged into, phones making wireless connection with more facilities will also be available as will the facility to use a mobile connected to your broadband connection.

Currently people get their broadband in one of three ways, copper all the way to the exchange, fibre to a roadside cabinet with copper to the exchange (FTTN), fibre all the way to the exchange (FTTH), all of these will continue to work.
In parallel to the withdrawal of PTSN (public switched telephone network) BT are increasing the ability to receive FTTH with the ultimate aim of removing all roadside cabinets.

There will be cheap internet services with very low bandwidth for VOIP only.

The ability to make emergency calls during a power cut has to be maintained, in areas where there is no mobile signal a mains powered BBU (battery backup unit) with a minimum life of one hour will have to be provided, providers may be forced to provide basic mobiles.

There are potential pitfalls when moving to VOIP and changes ISP which could result in loss of your landline number, all services except FTTP currently are tied to this number, FTTP is not you have to ensure that the number is available for VOIP.

I'll post in a bit about my plan to achieve this and separate my phone number so I have control of it not the ISP, similar to using email address other than name@isp.co.uk
Oh crikey it sounds awful. I am such a dinosaur! Definitely don't know my FTTN from my FTTH or my PTSN :(
(Should that be PSTN? Just sayin'...)

I wonder if I could somehow persuade the Powers That Be to postpone all this stuff till after I'm dead?

My prediction: people with dementia will NOT cope well with this.
 

Shedrech

Volunteer Moderator
Dec 15, 2012
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Yorkshire
oh my goodness @nitram thanks
I think a lot of people will find this troubling and troublesome, me included
one thing the pandemic evidenced was the number of households without access to the internet
 

nitram

Registered User
Apr 6, 2011
23,404
0
North Manchester
In the past the prime service was voice associated with a phone number, a broadband connection was an add on to this service and still identified by the phone number.

With FTTP the prime service is broadband and any voice is an add on, care has to be taken not to loose the phone number.

My ultimate aim is to move to FTTP and not only retain my landline number but also disassociate it with the FTTP CP (communications provider) giving me more freedom to switch CP.

FTTP has recently been provisioned for my exchange so sooner or later I expect to get a letter explaining things and what is going to happen, maybe later as I am not a BT customer.

You can check if you can get FTTP by going to
and scrolling down to see if it says an ONT (optical network termination) can be ordered.

Various CPs (think ISPs) are starting to say what they will offer, some will only offer broadband with no VOIP and this will have to be provided by a third party.
If I go to BT and move to FTTP I can pay £5/month extra for a 'landline phone' with various choices, I would opt for 'keep existing phone'', I'm a Luddite with some new fangled technology.
2021-09-01_164221.png


If I migrate landline and broadband from my current ISP I will automatically retain my number on 'digital voice' however if I wish to port my number to a different VOIP provider and I will have to use a third party ATA as BT will not disclose the info required to use a third party VOIP provider connected to the 'digital voice' port on their router.

Sometime in the future I intend getting a free account for VOIP probably with Sipgate
(there are others) and buying an ATA to remove any dependence on CP's whims, this will give me a different local number to practise on.

Porting my current number to Sipgate would automatically cancel my current FTTC account.

The tricky bit is going to be timing the transfer/migration to new FTTP and porting of number so I neither loose my number or end up with no voice service for a few days.
A lot depends if I stay with my current ISP (Plusnet) as the new CP or not.

For anybody planning a VOIP only installation not that a mains supply be required to power the router, it may not be convenient for the fibre to enter the house where the wire currently enters.
 

nitram

Registered User
Apr 6, 2011
23,404
0
North Manchester

I think a lot of people will find this troubling and troublesome, me included

In terms of installation, incoming wire will be changed to fibre and
71fn0rUVu0L._AC_UY327_FMwebp_QL65_.jpg

or one with one slot and a filter on a dongle
will be replaced by
IMG_0349.png

with a mains connection.
No problem so far except that you might have to organise the mains connection. Also a chance to move position of the incoming fibre so that the router will be better placed for WiFi throughout the house.

The difficult bit, and potential trap, for the unwary will be choice of CP and whether or not VOIP will be third party.
Taking BT in my previous post as an example.
It's easy to add landline and opt for a free fancy phone or or less fancy free pair of phones which are very unlikely to work with any other CP (maybe BT owned Plusnet and EE as exceptions, I use a reconfigured BT HomeHub on Plusnet) and buying similar replacement for a new CP could be expensive.
BT hope that having got the phone(s) and subscribed to various streaming and TV services you are unlikely to move.

Topic moved on a bit from

How do you think this could impact people living with dementia, and their families and carers?
Everybody will be involved.
 

Shedrech

Volunteer Moderator
Dec 15, 2012
10,784
0
Yorkshire
I agree topic has diverted a tad
but
maybe has shown the level of support we will all need, especially those who rely on not having to think about tech, just want to be certain it will work when it's needed

I hope the companies involved will be pro active in identifying and helping those who are vulnerable, especially those who simply will not grasp that this involves them, including thinking how all those scammers out there might use this and pre-venting them getting access to personal info and properties
 

Lawson58

Registered User
Aug 1, 2014
2,556
0
Victoria, Australia
I know things are different here in Australia but we haven't had a land line for ages.

The phone looks like any other phone and functions like it. My husband hasn't been able to use a mobile for years but hasn't even noticed the changeover.

If the internet went down and there was an emergency, he wouldn't know what to do anyway.

It's a long time off so this stuff will probably all be old hat by then. Not yet time to panic, folks.
 

lollyc

Registered User
Sep 9, 2020
426
0
I think the rush towards digital everything is extremely bad for many people, not just those with dementia. All sorts of assumptions are made about 1) what access to tech platforms people might have, 2) what level of ability people might have and 3) whether people should be forced to go digital even if they don't want to. What happened to choice? Just as it is assumed everyone has a photo ID. (I do not and it has caused me considerable problems in the past year.)

But I'd also like to know more about VoIP please! What if you have a landline but no internet connection - will you be forced to have one and pay for it?
I don't have a smartphone (I'm too dumb) and no-one sems to get their head around the fact. My GP asks me to send a photo, register for my records with an app etc., and seems incredulous that I manage to live my life with a basic text /calls mobile.
I'm not actually stupid,, but I don't like the idea of beig forced into using technology that I don't feel I need or want. I have older relatives (no dementia) who are the same.
I can't help feeling we are going to end up exposing people to all sorts of scams, because they simply aren't internet savvy.
As for a person with dementia? Life is already confusing enough!
 

Jessbow

Registered User
Mar 1, 2013
3,707
0
West Hertfordshire
I dont Lollyo, no desire to have one either.

people do seem to tke it for granted and look at you quizically when you say you cabt download an ap.

What in this world do i absolutely need an ap for?
Managed quite nicely without them until now
 

MartinWL

Registered User
Jun 12, 2020
1,148
0
By 2025 all homes will have their landline switched over to Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP). VoIP is a technology that allows you to make voice calls using a broadband internet connection instead of a regular (or analogue) phone line. Your telephone provider will support you with this change, free of charge.

How do you think this could impact people living with dementia, and their families and carers?

Our Research and Influencing team would like to use your comments in this thread to highlight risks and potential harm to industry leaders. Specifically, they intend to push for the highest level of support to people affected by dementia at all stages of this switchover.

Thanks everyone :)
Nothing to worry about in general. VOIP phones can look just like conventional phones and can be used in just the same way if they are of the right design.
 

jugglingmum

Registered User
Jan 5, 2014
6,054
0
Chester
Having googled and read around I'm not sure it's that big an issue.

Whilst the phone will be connected via a broadband connection there is no need to have broadband as well so it will just be swapping one plug in box for another on the wall to plug the phone into. No different from an engineer visiting to fix something. The websites indicate that most care alarms will work fine.

You are likely to keep your phone number so won't notice any issues there either.

Our phone is part of our broadband package and has been for about 17 years so I'm assuming we won't notice any changes.
 

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