TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: Classic Six-Button Keysets - Cost During 1970s

Re: Classic Six-Button Keysets - Cost During 1970s

Paul Coxwell (
Sat, 20 Aug 2005 17:12:51 +0100

> And something I've always wondered about is the use of multiple lines
> in countries outside of the US such as in Europe and in Asia. Often
> I'd see numbers advertised or on signage on the order of 123456/7
> meaning that you could reach that business by dialing either 123456 or
> 123457. Does this mean that these step-by-step/Strowger or other
> electromechanical exchanges did not have trunk hunt and that this is
> just a North American "invention." I can't think of any other reason
> for listing for the public both numbers if they were sequential other
> than the facility for automatic trunk hunt was not available.

Hunt groups were certainly used in the British PSTN when it was mostly
SxS. All it took was suitable links on one bank of the final selector
(connector) for it to hunt across subscriber lines in much the same
way as any other type of selector would hunt for a free trunk.

It was quite common for a larger company to advertise its number as
something like "REGent 2101 (8 lines)" People could still call on
2102, 2103, etc., but of course the hunting on busy would progress
only forward from that line.

Businesses with just two or three lines did indeed advertise as, for
example, "REGent 2101/2/3." Either they genuinely had consecutive but
separate lines, or maybe in some cases whoever was in charge of
advertising, letterheads, etc. didn't realize that the system would
hunt and that "REGent 2101 (3 lines)" or simply "REGent 2101" would
have been sufficient. Naturally, the former option would have made
the company look more prestigious.

- Paul.

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