Upgrading landline calling and retiring the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN)

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Upgrading landline calling and retiring PSTN

Spark is starting the next phase of its landline voice calling upgrade to ensure that customers can stay connected now and into the future.

The upgrade will move customers onto more modern technology that is already being used by the majority of Kiwis, including landline over wireless and landline over Fibre.

To keep New Zealand connected into the future, we’re retiring the old PSTN area by area, and moving customers to a more modern network. It’s a once-in-a-generation technology upgrade, like moving from analogue TV to digital.

Spark operates the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN), which is a network of switches that connects calls from one person to another over copper lines. It’s an old system that was built in the 1980s. The parts we need to keep it going aren’t being made any more, so it’s time for us to retire the PSTN.

Locations

We are starting with Devonport in Auckland and Miramar in Wellington.

So, in these two suburbs, we'll be switching off the old PSTN. This means customers will need to move their landline services to either wireless or Fibre before we make the switch.

Spark customers using broadband over copper will also need to move to alternative broadband services (such as Spark’s broadband over wireless or Fibre). Because some of Spark’s broadband over copper services are also delivered through systems associated with these old switches, Spark has also made the decision to withdraw all of its copper-based broadband services in these areas.

Fewer than 1,000 customers will be impacted by the change and they will be contacted mid-September 2020. If you are one of these customers, the change will be a very simple process for most. We will send you the information you need to make an informed choice about what landline calling or broadband service you would like to move to, with a recommendation based on how you use your landline or broadband and what’s available at your place. We will then arrange the move to the new service. We have a specialist team on hand which can chat through any concerns you have to ensure you have everything you need to stay connected before we make the switch. It’s also okay to choose a different provider for your new landline calling or broadband connection. While we would be sad to see you go, we can help you leave without any early exit fees.

We know these things can be unsettling, so we’ll do everything we can to make it easy. We want to make sure you will have access to modern technology that will keep you connected into the future.

If you have any questions, get in touch with our specialist team on 0800 733 799.

Note: SME business customers, please get in touch with your local Business Hub. Corporate/Enterprise customers, please contact your Customer Lead.

FAQs for customers in Devonport and Miramar

As the PSTN is end of life and with parts no longer available, it won’t continue to work in the future. We will work with you to move your services to a more modern, more resilient service that’s future proofed. If you want to update your connection prior to mid-September when we will be contacting affected customers directly, please get in touch with our specialist team on 0800 733 799 and they will arrange everything for you.

Absolutely, by making the change now you won’t have to do it in a few months' time. Please get in touch with our specialist team on 0800 733 799 and they will arrange everything for you.

If you have a Spark broadband connection over copper (ADSL or VDSL) you will need to move to an alternative service. Spark is offering most impacted customers either fibre or wireless broadband (or both). This is because some of Spark’s broadband over copper services are also delivered through systems associated with these old switches, Spark has also made the decision to withdraw all of its copper based broadband services in your area. So once we shut down this old technology in your area, Spark copper broadband will no longer be available.

Other providers may still offer broadband delivered over copper in Devonport and Miramar. You’d need to check with them directly. While we would be sad to see you go, we can help you leave without any early exit fees.

If you are a Spark customer, and your naked broadband service is delivered over copper (ADSL or VDSL) then you will need to move to an alternative service. This is because some of Spark’s broadband over copper services are also delivered through systems associated with these old switches, Spark has also made the decision to withdraw all of its copper based broadband services in your area.