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The Development of Modern Phone Services
Telecommunication has come a long way since the days of waving a flag and sending up a smoke signal. In 1792, a French engineer invented the first telegraph system. The first electrical telegraph was opened on April 9, 1839 and was built by Sir William Fothergill Cooke and Sir Charles Wheatstone. And, of course, the first telephone was patented in 1876 and is attributed to Alexander Graham Bell. From there, the technology completely revolutionized the world.
Today, there are more phone services than ever. Having a standard land line is still a good option for most people. However, its delivery is much different than it was when the device first became available in the average home. Today, new lines are installed using a fiber optic network. This is much more reliable, holds more data and allows things like voice signals and Internet data to be transferred side by side on the same network. A home phone is still cheaper than most other options. However, with so many people leading busy lives, they are at home less and less. Because of this, it is becoming quite common for people to favor other options over the traditional land line.
Around the early 1990s, the mobile phone became a new player in the phone services market. These phones were portable and allowed communication even when people were away from home. They quickly became popular among contractors and other business people. They were initially quite large, with the earliest models being referred to as the brick phones because they were about the size of an average brick. As the technology progressed, mobile phones became not only smaller, but more accessible to the general public. Today, almost everyone carries a mobile phone, including children. Many people are finding that they don't need their home phone line anymore. With mobile phones being their main form of communication, the home phone is becoming an unneeded expense. Mobile phone companies are also adapting their phone services to meet the needs of the modern customer. For example, as text messaging became more common, companies began to include it in the standard service package.
Besides land lines and mobile phones, many people are starting to take advantage of the phone services that are available via the Internet. Things like VoIP, or voice over IP, are becoming more common. This allows a computer user to send phone signals over their Internet connection. While some people use the computer microphone, it is also becoming common to plug an adapter into a USB port that you can hook a telephone to. There is a small monthly fee associated with VoIP services, but there is no added cost for the bandwidth used as you are tapping into your existing Internet connection. This is a great option for people who want to have a home phone, but don't want to pay for a standard land line.
Because they have been a part of our lives for so many years, people tend to take phone services for granted. We send and receive information in real time and have almost everything on demand. However, it hasn't always been that way. The first telephone effectively shrunk the perceived size of the world overnight and we still benefit from those advances today. All the options in phone service today came from these same roots.