34 Years of the Digest ... founded August 21, 1981
Copyright © 2015 E. William Horne. All Rights Reserved.

The Telecom Digest for Monday, December 7, 2015

Volume 34 : Issue 221 : "Text" format

Table of contents:

* 1 - Re: [telecom] Answering machine problem - GlowingBlueMist
* 2 - Re: [telecom] Manhattan to get new 332 area code in 2017 - HAncock4


Message-ID: <n4010t$ou3$1@dont-email.me>
Date: Sat, 5 Dec 2015 18:56:08 -0600
From: GlowingBlueMist <GlowingBlueMist@blackhole.io>
Subject: Re: [telecom] Answering machine problem

On 12/4/2015 8:27 AM, Bob K wrote:
> Does anyone have any suggestions on what make answering machines might
> be able to handle distinctive ring?

You might be able to use something like the device(s) found at the
following link.


Nothing says it has to have a FAX plugged into it.  Two phone devices
rather than a phone and a FAX is also a viable combination.

***** Moderator's Note *****

Looks like just the thing.

Bill Horne

Message-ID: <e027a11d-6c0d-4dbf-b3c4-50d5adc53055@googlegroups.com>
Date: Sat, 5 Dec 2015 19:13:59 -0800 (PST)
From: HAncock4 <withheld@invalid.telecom-digest.org>
Subject: Re: [telecom] Manhattan to get new 332 area code in 2017

On Saturday, December 5, 2015 at 1:13:06 AM UTC-5, Michael D. Sullivan wrote:

> >>Many, many years ago New Yorkers could dial seven digits to reach
> >>not only anywhere within New York City, but also neighboring
> >>New Jersey, Westchester, and Nassau counties.
> The articles regarding the new 332 area code didn't mention this.  And
> it certainly wasn't the case in my recollection.  We needed to use 516
> to reach Nassau County from Manhattan in the early 1960s.  Perhaps
> people living in eastern Queens or Brooklyn could reach Nassau numbers
> without an area code, through the use of NXX codes that weren't used
> in both NPAs (just as DC and suburban Maryland could call each other
> with 7 digits despite different area codes, at one point).  Any more
> information?

It began on May 14, 1950.  I believe area codes were required around
1960 due to the explosive suburban growth.  (--NYT, pg 52, 5/14/1950).

At the same time, NY Telephone changed from itemized billing to bulk
billing (message units).  This saved the company billing expenses from
listing many 15c or 25c calls on the bill.  It made a slight decrease
in cost to the customer (ref above NYT article).

However, a lot of subscribers objected to this because they wanted to
see an itemized bill, not just a bulk count of message units.  Several
cities used that approach, I believe Chicago, Boston, Philadelphia,
San Francisco, and northern New Jersey.

In some cases an AMA record was still produced, but in others the
line's message register was simply incremented as needed for the call.
Message registers were part of the Panel System and No. 1 Crossbar

Philadelphia landline subscribers who have basic service still pay
message unit charges (now called "measured service") for suburban
calls.  If memory serves, the basic message unit cost has been 7c for
the last fifty years.  In recent years, Verizon has expanded the free
calling areas.  So, adjusted for inflation, the cost of suburban
calling for basic subscribers has dropped quite a bit.

Many areas near an area code border had seven digit dialing and local
calling across the border, even if it crossed state lines.  The 7
digit dialing ended when the respective areas got squeezed on exchange
nacodes.  While the 7 digit dialing went away, the local calling still

As an aside, in some upper parts of Westchester County, only five
digits were required for a local call into the 1980s.

As an aside, following WW II, many areas in Long Island and eastern
Queens were still served by manual switchboards.  There was a major
telephone strike at that time.  People with dial service could still
make local calls, but manual subscribers had extremely limited
service.  The telco urged such subscribers to only use the phone for
emergencies (management manned the switchboards and of course was
spread very thin).

The last manual exchange in New York City, City Island in the Bronx,
cut over to dial (No. 5 crossbar) in May 1960.



End of telecom Digest Mon, 07 Dec 2015