long distance services

Telecommunications Fun Facts

  • 1900 - First coin telephone installed.
  • 1951 - First long distance phone call without directory assistance.
  • 1968 - First 911 system was introduced in the United States.
  • 1971 - First commercially viable answering machine.
  • 1985 - Cellular car phones introduced.
  • 1988 - Auto-Dialing phone cards introduced.
  • 1993 - The White House goes online.
  • Alexander Graham Bell originally wanted the greeting for the telephone to be "Ahoy" but Thomas Edison voted for "Hello," a word he coined in 1877.
  • The original name of the telephone was the harmonic telegraph.
  • It took a year to connect the first line from New York to San Francisco. 14,000 miles of copper wire and 130,000 telephone poles were needed to link the country.
  • The annual revenue for the telephone industry is $210 billion, almost 8 times that of
    television and 23 times the revenue of radio.
  • Cellular phone service has accounted for a third of the telephone industry's growth for the last four years.
  • The US telephone wireless and directory market is expected to reach $211 billion by the year 2001.
  • Globally, about $1 trillion is spent annually on telecommunications products and services.
  • One million threads of fiber optic cable can fit in a tube 1/2" in diameter.
  • In 1999, new fiber was being installed at a rate of 2800 miles or 4500 kilometers per hour! (Source: Address by C. Michael Armstrong, Chairman & CEO, AT&T at Telecom '99 Geneva, Switerland)
  • The telephone is the most used piece of communication equipment in the world.
  • The busiest organization in the world is the Pentagon, which has 34,500 lines and gets 1 million calls a day. It received over 1.5 million phone calls on The 50th Anniversary of D-Day.
  • The busiest telephone exchange was by BellSouth at the 1996 Olympic Games, where 100 billion bits of information were transmitted per second.
  • Sweden is the country with the greatest penetration of telephones. It has 229 phones for every 1,000 people.
  • The longest phone cable is a submarine cable called FLAG (Fiber-Optic Link Around the Globe). It spans 16,800 miles from Japan to the United Kingdom and can carry 600,000 calls at a time.
  • The telephone is the most profitable invention in US history.

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