BT is forging ahead with plans to switch millions of its customers from a traditional copper landline to a new broadband-powered system, dubbed Digital Voice.
It plans to switch over all eligible BT customers by next summer, with BT promising clearer calls and better protection from fraud and spam calls under the new system. That’s ahead of schedule as the ageing landline network isn’t scheduled to be switched off until 2025.
If you already have a full-fibre broadband plan with BT, nothing will change as the company has offered Digital Voice to fibre customers as standard for a number of years. Starting from September 6, BT confirmed that it had stopped selling copper-based products to all new customers.
If you’re unsure whether you’re already using the newer system, the easiest way to check whether you’re already using the new system is to look for ‘Digital Voice’ branding on the handset or check whether it’s plugged into the back of your Wi-Fi router or a landline socket.
According to BT, there are 2 million customers across the UK using Digital Voice to make and receive calls.
The areas where BT has already completed the switch to Digital Voice are as follows…
• Wiltshire
• Suffolk
• East Midlands
• Yorkshire
• The Humber
• Northern Ireland

The next areas of the UK set to be switched from traditional landlines are…
• North West – Autumn 2023
• Greater London –Autumn 2023
• West Midlands – Spring 2024
• South East – Spring 2024
• Wales – Spring 2024
• East Anglia – Spring 2024
• North East – Summer 2024
• Scotland – Summer 2024
• South West – Summer 2024

If you live in one of these areas and haven’t heard from BT yet – chances are, they’ll be in touch very soon. BT says it aims to contact people at least four weeks before the deadline for the switch.
For most people, the switch will be seamless with 99% of existing landline phones set to work with the new standard. However, there are some customers who might have more trouble moving away from traditional landline technology.
Those who don’t have a broadband connection at home, live in an area with no mobile signal, or wear healthcare pendants that require a landline, could find the transition over to Digital Voice a little more complicated, BT has admitted.

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