Combined with BT's 'Big Switch-Off' - due to take place in 2025 - and the challenges Covid has brought to homeworking, Panasonic's surprise announcement at the end of 2020 has led to many businesses having to look for alternative solutions.
The move has been caused by the rapid shift to cloud and the shift to new types of demand (Collaborate, Teams, Zoom etc) accelerated by Covid-19 which has made the future of traditional telephony too unpredictable for Panasonic.
Simon Gardner, sales manager of Lister Unified Communications, said Panasonic were one of the main telephone system providers and Listers had partnered with them for 20 years.
But he urged businesses still using Panasonic systems not to panic as Panasonic has confirmed the manufacture and supply of product and licences will continue as normal until December 2022.
Panasonic will continue to support technical escalations in software until December 2024 and will ensure a level of market capacity to ensure spare parts and additional new licences until December 2029. Lister Unified Communications, based in Stonehouse, will supply, maintain and support its Panasonic customers by continuing to maintain Panasonic stock and retaining Panasonic specific skills and knowledge within its engineering, sales and support teams throughout this transition. Simon said: "There is no urgency to make any changes to Panasonic systems based on these timescales. Your investment in Panasonic is still appropriate with options to add and to expand while fully supported."
However, he warned: "If your Panasonic goes wrong, you're going to be less likely to find someone capable of fixing it."
Simon explained that historically, a Panasonic system was your 'box under the stairs' in your office connecting all your telephones, but systems now are all run remotely from the cloud.
"There must be people still out there with Panasonics who don't know about this and don't know what to do," he said.
"Businesses have enough on their plate at the moment but we just want to give them the heads-up on these changes.
"We can help with your current Panasonic system; we can advise you what licences and support there is for your Panasonic and what options are out there for because your world is changing as everyone has changed in the last two years."
When the time is right for you to replace your Panasonic systems, Listers can work with you to transition your telecoms to a SIP or cloud solution that is right for you. For help and more information, call 01453 829200, email email@example.com or visit www.lister-communications.co.uk.