Introduction To Line Telecommunications


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9. Simple Telephone Devices
  9. - Simple Telephone Devices 9.4 - Modems
  9.1 - Telephone Answering Machines 9.5 - Voicemail Systems
  9.2 - Cordless Telephones 9.6 - Specialist Devices
9.3 - Facsimile Machines

9. - Simple Telephone Devices

The simplest of Simple Telephones is the familiar home telephone consisting of handset and base, which can make and receive calls, but little else. For many people this is all they need. Such devices are readily available costing upwards of a few pounds.

There have always been more exotic devices, using the same technology, to perform specific functions and jobs. With deregulation of the telecommunications market the number of such devices available and the jobs they do has increased and will continue to do so, becoming a part of our everyday lives.

This chapter introduces the most common types, giving an description of a typical device, outlining the type of features that will be encountered and commenting on the benefits and drawbacks of each type.

9.1 - Telephone Answering Machines

The Telephone Answering Machine (TAM) together with the cordless telephone are probably the most widely known developments of the simple telephone device, being found today in most homes and offices.

The TAM in its basic form is a call receiver which will, in the absence of the owner, answer a call, play a greeting message and invite the caller to leave a message, which is recorded for playback when the owner returns.

There is no requirement for outgoing calls so there is no handset or dial functionality included. The unit is connected across the line in parallel with the standard telephone. With correct installation the TAM function can be interrupted by picking up the parallel handset to take a call in the process of being answered.

Figure 5 shows two methods of connection between telephones and answering machines. The first is a parallel connection between the two and the second shows the TAM fitted between the telephone and incoming line. Some TAM equipment has a socket provided for this type of connection.

Figure 6 - Connection Of Telephone Answering Machines

So far the basic TAM has been described. It is now common for the TAM function to be included as part of the functionality of a more complex telephone or facsimile machine. These are referred to as TELTAM and FAXTAM. There are also enhanced TAMs which offer more than simple message recording.

More recent features found on TAMs include:

Time / Date Stamping A synthesised voice records the time and date after each message.

New Message Play Only the new, unheard, messages are played back. Older messages being stored for later review or archiving.

Remote Access The owner can dial into the machine from an external telephone and recover messages and/or modify the TAM parameters.

Announce Mode The TAM plays a recorded message to callers, but does not accept or record a message from the caller.

External Delivery Found on very few TAMs. An external number is dialled and the messages recorded are played back, usually after entry of a user PIN Number.

Digital Recording Messages are stored in electronic memory instead of tape. These machines are more expensive, but do not wear out as quickly as tape based TAMs.




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Extracted from

Introduction To Line Telecommunications
Copyright Panasonic Business Systems UK Ltd 2000