General Question

srmorgan's avatar

When were the first telephone answering machines for home use put on the market?

Asked by srmorgan (6740points) March 5th, 2010

Need to settle an argument.
Mid-70’s or early 80’s

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7 Answers

erichw1504's avatar

“In 1983 Kazuo Hashimoto received a patent for a Digital Answering Machine architecture with US Patent 4,616,110. The first Digital Answering Machine brought to the market was AT&T’s 1337”

So, I guess the early 80’s.


dpworkin's avatar

I think I remember them being around in the ‘70s, but I haven’t looked it up, so I could be wrong.

Strauss's avatar

I think it was actually in the early 70’s. (I’m trusting my memory here – dangerous) I remember calling a religious line in the sixties that had a recording that changed every day. That probably would not be a home system, though.

marinelife's avatar

1971 PhoneMate Answering Machine
In 1971, PhoneMate introduced one of the first commercially viable answering machines, the Model 400. The unit weighs 10 pounds, screens calls and holds 20 messages on a reel-to-reel tape. An earphone enables private message retrieval.


Strauss's avatar

@marinelife and it was only available through the telephone company. (because at that time there was only one phone company!)

Val123's avatar

It was in the 80’s. I remember the uproar over the idea that if a burglar called your house and got the answering machine they’d know you weren’t home and burgle you! Of course, that media hysteria was very short lived.

dpworkin's avatar

@erichw1504 The first ones were not digital, and were more than a decade older.

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