TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: Hayes Smartmodems (was Re: Bell Divestiture)

Re: Hayes Smartmodems (was Re: Bell Divestiture)

Fred Atkinson (
Sat, 25 Jun 2005 02:48:08 GMT

On 23 Jun 2005 13:29:19 -0700, wrote:

> I'm confused. IIRC, the command was four characters, either
> ATDT or ATDP. Are you saying it would work with three?

Yes. With ATD, it would default to rotor dialing.

> Also, for dialing out of a PBX, wasn't a 'pause' character needed to
> allow time for the second dial tone?

That's what the comma did. But actually in most electronic PBXs, the
pause wasn't really necessary.

> Way back then a lot of people still had rotary service and most
> systems supported both. I don't think early on defaulting to pulse
> was such a bad idea for those days.

I don't agree. When the Smartmodem came out, touch tone was greatly
in the majority and really was a better choice for lines that did

> IIRC, Hayes was the leader in modems, but didn't they end up going
> bankrupt? I didn't understand that.

I *do* understand it. They were a bit pigheaded about their pricing.
I believe that that is what did them in. They thought people would
pay four hundred for a Hayes modem (versus seventy-five for a
Hayes-compatible (non-Hayes) modem). In other words, they thought
people would continue to pay the big money to drive a Cadillac. I
believe it did them in.

It made me very sad, too. I believed in Hayes quality. When I was at
SkyTel, we used a bunch of them for our field equipment and on our PCs
at the office to call up that equipment.

>> [TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: I think we used 'ATT' for tone dialing
>> and 'ATP' for pulse dialing. Fred, (in a help desk capacity) did you
>> ever run across customers who _lied_, told you they had tried to do
>> something but in fact had not done it at all.

I'm sure it did. But all you can do in most cases is to take their
word. After all, they are the customer.

> That certainly does happen. But more commonly is people who _think_
> they did something when they actually didn't, or for some reason what
> they entered didn't take (ie keyboard locked up and they didn't
> realize it -- that's very common.)

I know it's common. But it's something you have to live with.


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