Ofcom said it has already begun investigating how to manage the use of UK landline telephones numbers in the future, including the potential to use blockchain technology.
The technology, initially created as the infrastructure for decentralised cryptocurrencies, could be used to make it quicker and easier for landline customers to switch providers while keeping the same phone number as well as potentially reducing nuisance calls.
It said added that all 610 area codes could also be scrapped with the growth of broadband-based call technology.
Already Openreach is looking at turning off analogue lines by 2025 so this will mean customers switching over to voip with their current provider in the future, but not yet as the technology infrastructure will not yet be in place.
Once this is arranged and testing is complete, then it’s expected that current providers will then have plans in place which customers can switch over to.
When area codes were first created in the 1950s, they had particular significance on a telephone dial.
Numbers corresponded to two-letter identifiers, such as AB (22) for Aberdeen. So today, Aberdeen’s area code is ‘01224’ (01AB4).
"Some of us can remember a time when we stored phone numbers in our head, rather than our mobile. But the way we use and feel about telephone numbers is changing," she said.
"In the future, as more calls are made over broadband, dialling codes won't need to be fixed to a particular part of the country. So the question is - could area codes become a thing of the past?"