PSTN-to-IP transition

States push back on ISP copper retirement plans

Telephone companies may want to ditch copper and focus on the next best thing (i.e., fiber). But states aren’t about to let them off the hook. According to New Street Research, ILECs seeking to end their carrier of last resort (COLR) obligations are getting pushback from states because consumers might not have another option for internet access—including wireless. A COLR is a telecommunications service provider that’s required to serve upon request all customers within its designated service areas.

Fiber Broadband Association Research Underscores Benefits of Retiring Copper for Future-Proof Fiber

The Fiber Broadband Associations Technology Committee published a new white paper on "The Benefits of Retiring Copper Today." Many telecommunications providers still face unnecessary complexity and expense by continuing to operate legacy copper last-mile broadband infrastructure, especially if they already migrated to fiber in the core and access network.

Telephone companies, do you want to turn old copper into cash? Here's how.

There are several reasons why a telephone company with legacy copper cables might want to extract those cables. First, copper is valuable. It’s currently priced at an all-time high of more than $5 per pound. And who doesn’t love found money? Secondly, some carriers, such as AT&T, are trying to convert large swathes of their copper plant to fiber.

AT&T paid bribes to get two major pieces of legislation passed, US government says

The US government has provided more detail on how a former AT&T executive allegedly bribed a powerful state lawmaker's ally in order to obtain legislation favorable to AT&T's business. Former AT&T Illinois President Paul La Schiazza is set to go on trial in September 2024 after being indicted on charges of conspiracy to unlawfully influence then-Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan (D).

Two died after UK shift from analogue to digital phone lines

The telecommunications industry’s transition from an analogue to a digital telephone system was partially paused after two Virgin Media O2 customers died following the failure of their telecare devices after the upgrade process. The incidents in 2023 triggered the government’s announcement in December that it had secured industry commitments to protect vulnerable customers.

The Quickening Pace of Landline Retirement

Sooner rather than later, landline telephone service will completely transition to wireless and Internet-based calling (commonly referred to as Voice Over the Internet Protocol or "VoIP").  While the Federal Communications Commission, for over a decade, has precluded a “flash cut” service termination, I expect the timeline for copper wire service retirements to shorten.

BEAD could help rural America with voice as well as broadband

In rural areas, many large internet service providers (ISP) offer voice-over-IP. Nathan Smith, Director of Economics and Policy at Connected Nation said, “It’s likely that a lot of [Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD)] sub-grantees will add voice for an additional revenue stream." However, the BEAD Notice of Funding Opportunity does not require grant applicants to offer voice service, though the actual grants will be made by state governments who set their own rules. Ciena’s Solutions Marketing Senior Adviser Vinicius Santos expects some state broadband offices to ask applicants

Unwinding the PSTN

The Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) network has been used for interconnection to the local incumbent offices and tandem switches, for connecting to 911 centers, for connecting to operator services, for connecting to cellular carriers, or for connecting to other neighboring carriers. We are finally starting to see that network being shut down, route by route and piece by piece. But like everything related to operating in the regulated legacy world, it’s not easy to disconnect the PSTN connections called trunks.

Frontier CEO says copper decommissioning is 3-5 years out

Frontier Communications still has hundreds of thousands of copper passings, but it doesn’t seem like that footprint will be taken offline anytime soon.

Senators Urged To Invest In Variety Of Broadband Technologies

During a hearing titled "Building Resilient Networks," lawmakers on the Senate Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Communications, Media, and Broadband were asked to boost the reliability of the nation's broadband networks by spreading infrastructure funding among a variety of technologies such as fixed wireless and mobile broadband rather than limiting it solely to fiber. Wireless Infrastructure Association President Jonathan Adelstein testified that a singular focus on fiber broadband networks that can deliver "symmetrical" speeds of 100 megabits per second would prioritize a sometimes c