An FCC ruling allows telecom companies to cease support for analog communications, which means you won’t be able to rely on your fax machines or on-prem fax servers for much longer.
As a corporate IT professional, you probably have many valid reasons for wanting to finally dump your legacy fax infrastructure—from the hassles of troubleshooting paper jams to the high costs of renewing maintenance agreements.
But based on a federal regulation just updated in August 2022, if your company needs reliable and affordable faxing capability going forward, you’ll actually need to retire that legacy fax infrastructure—quickly—and replace it with something new.
What this federal ruling means for you
Here’s the story. For decades, the Federal Communications Commission has required telecommunications companies to offer their customers affordable analog communications using the Plain Old Telephone Service (POTS).
But with the ever-increasing availability and falling costs of digital services such as VoIP,
millions of customers have migrated away from the POTS network on their own, which has made these services both more burdensome and less profitable for carriers. So, in 2019, the FCC issued a ruling allowing these companies to retire their POTS infrastructure over a three-year transition period. That transition ended in August 2022.
What does this mean to your company? If your business’s faxing infrastructure still runs on fax machines or in-house fax servers, you should assume the phone carrier that supplies your analog fax lines is scrambling to decommission those lines as quickly as possible. And that means, if your business operations require the continued ability to send and receive faxes, you’ll need to find an alternative solution as well.
Why you should be looking for a new fax solution right now
A word of warning. Perhaps you’re one of the lucky organizations whose phone carrier is behind on the FCC’s August 2022 decommission deadline. Maybe your carrier hasn’t even begun the work of drawing down the POTS infrastructure that supports your analog fax lines.
You should not treat your carrier’s delay as an opportunity to relax your own search for a more modern business-faxing alternative. There are two important reasons for this.
First, as your carrier migrates its resources away from supporting your POTS-enabled analog service, you should expect both the quality and reliability of service to deteriorate.
Second, the longer it takes your carrier to fully eliminate its POTS infrastructure, the more likely it is that your costs for maintaining that outdated service will rise. After all, another key provision of the FCC’s ruling was to remove the price caps on what carriers are allowed to charge for POTS-enabled services.
The smart, easy way to migrate your fax environment away from POTS
So, the FCC has essentially ordered the shutdown of the POTS communications currently powering your company’s faxing capabilities. And even if your provider hasn’t yet gotten around to carrying out that order, they will—and from their perspective, the sooner the better.
What do you do now? There is one extremely simple and cost-effective solution: switch to digital cloud fax. Moving your company to the right, enterprise-caliber cloud faxing solution will mean:
- Your IT team won’t have any onsite hardware to administer or troubleshoot.
- Your staff will be able to send, receive, view, edit, and sign faxes digitally from any computer, tablet, or smartphone.
- Your company will have an affordable, pay-as-you fax solution that you can scale up—or down—as much and as often as you need.
- You’ll save time and money by eliminating the time-consuming manual steps of legacy faxing—and replacing them with a streamlined digital platform that integrates seamlessly with your other workflow apps.
And, perhaps most important for our current conversation:
- You’ll move your faxing environment from dependence on the near-obsolete POTS to a future-proof cloud-based communications platform currently serving literally millions of businesses’ daily faxing needs.
Let’s get your faxing infrastructure free from the POTS infrastructure—
and onto the industry’s most trusted cloud fax platform.