Answering machine

telephone answering machineanswer phoneanswering machinesanswerphoneansafoneansweringanswering messagesanswering-machinephone messagerecord spoken messages
The answering machine, answerphone or message machine, also known as telephone answering machine (or TAM) in the UK and some Commonwealth countries, ansaphone or ansafone (from a trade name), or telephone answering device (TAD), is used for answering telephones and recording callers' messages.wikipedia
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Voicemail

voice mailvoice-mailvoice messaging
Unlike voicemail, which can be a centralized or networked system that covers, and mostly extends, similar functions, an answering machine is set up in the user's premises alongside - or incorporated within- the user's land-line telephone.
The term is also used more broadly to denote any system of conveying a stored telecommunications voice messages, including using an answering machine.

Cassette tape

cassetteCSaudio cassette
While early answering machines used magnetic tape technology, most modern equipment uses solid state memory storage; some devices use a combination of both, with a solid-state circuit for the outgoing message and a cassette for the incoming messages.
Cassettes remained popular for specific applications, such as car audio and telephone answering machines, well into the 1990s.

Kazuo Hashimoto

Another commercially successful answering machine was the Ansafone created by inventor Dr. Kazuo Hashimoto, who was employed by a company called Phonetel.
Kazuo Hashimoto was a Japanese inventor who registered over 1,000 patents throughout the world, including patents for Caller-ID system and telephone answering machine.

Microcassette

cassetteMCmicrocassettes
This holds especially for the TADs with digitally stored greeting messages or for earlier machines (before the rise of microcassettes) with a special endless loop tape, separate from a second cassette, dedicated to recording.
In particular, they are commonly used in dictation machines and answering machines.

Call screening

screening callsCall screenerscreen her phone calls
This is useful if the owner is screening calls and does not wish to speak with all callers.
listening to the message being recorded on an answering machine or voice mail.

Ludwig Blattner

Blattnerphone
Ludwig Blattner promoted a telephone answering machine in 1929 based on his Blattnerphone magnetic recording technology.
In 1930 Blattner promoted a version of his Blattnerphone technology as one of the first telephone answering machines, and in 1931 Blatter promoted a version of the Blattnerphone as the Blattner Book Reader, an early Audiobook playback system for the blind.

Business telephone system

PBXprivate branch exchangekey telephone system
Business telephone system
Answering machine functions

Call-recording hardware

hardware
Call-recording hardware
Consumer call-recording hardware was introduced in the 1970s, along with the first consumer-grade answering machines.

United Kingdom

British🇬🇧UK
The answering machine, answerphone or message machine, also known as telephone answering machine (or TAM) in the UK and some Commonwealth countries, ansaphone or ansafone (from a trade name), or telephone answering device (TAD), is used for answering telephones and recording callers' messages.

Commonwealth of Nations

CommonwealthBritish CommonwealthCommonwealth nations
The answering machine, answerphone or message machine, also known as telephone answering machine (or TAM) in the UK and some Commonwealth countries, ansaphone or ansafone (from a trade name), or telephone answering device (TAD), is used for answering telephones and recording callers' messages.

Trade name

doing business asDBAd/b/a
The answering machine, answerphone or message machine, also known as telephone answering machine (or TAM) in the UK and some Commonwealth countries, ansaphone or ansafone (from a trade name), or telephone answering device (TAD), is used for answering telephones and recording callers' messages.

Operator messaging

message center
Unlike operator messaging the caller does not talk to a human.

Landline

fixed linefixed-lineland line
As landlines become less important, due to the shift to cell phone technology, and as unified communications matures, the installed base of TADs is shrinking.

Unified communications

Unified Communicationcommunicationsunif
As landlines become less important, due to the shift to cell phone technology, and as unified communications matures, the installed base of TADs is shrinking.

Installed base

installed user baseuser baseinstall base
As landlines become less important, due to the shift to cell phone technology, and as unified communications matures, the installed base of TADs is shrinking.

Magnetic storage

magnetic recordingmagnetic mediamagnetic disk
Most 20th century answering machines used magnetic recording which Valdemar Poulsen invented in 1898.

Valdemar Poulsen

telegraphonePoulsen, Valdemara Danish inventor
Most 20th century answering machines used magnetic recording which Valdemar Poulsen invented in 1898.

Clarence N. Hickman

C. N. HickmanClarence Nichols Hickman
Starting in 1930, Clarence Hickman worked for Bell Laboratories, where he developed methods for magnetic recording and worked on the recognition of speech patterns and electromechanical switching systems.

Bell Labs

Bell Telephone LaboratoriesBell LaboratoriesAT&T Bell Laboratories
Starting in 1930, Clarence Hickman worked for Bell Laboratories, where he developed methods for magnetic recording and worked on the recognition of speech patterns and electromechanical switching systems.

AT&T

AT&T Inc.AT&T Latin AmericaSBC
In 1934, he developed a tape-based answering machine which phone company AT&T, as the owner of Bell Laboratories, kept under wraps for years for fear that an answering machine would result in fewer telephone calls.

Wire recording

wire recorderwire recordersmagnetic wire recorder
The Electronic Secretary used the then state-of-the-art technology of a 45 rpm record player for announcements and a wire recorder for message capture and playback.

Magnetic tape

tapetapesanalog tape
While early answering machines used magnetic tape technology, most modern equipment uses solid state memory storage; some devices use a combination of both, with a solid-state circuit for the outgoing message and a cassette for the incoming messages.

Solid-state drive

SSDsolid state drivesolid-state drives
While early answering machines used magnetic tape technology, most modern equipment uses solid state memory storage; some devices use a combination of both, with a solid-state circuit for the outgoing message and a cassette for the incoming messages.

AT&T Corporation

AT&TAmerican Telephone & Telegraph CompanyAmerican Telephone and Telegraph Company
Mr. Hashimoto sued AT&T but quickly dropped the suit because the AT&T architecture was significantly different from his patent.

Terminal equipment

terminus
In some cases the terminal equipment answering a call just sends a slightly modified ringback tone to the caller, while processing the protocol.