What is the tone mode of a landline phone?

Stationary (wired, home) phones for their intended purpose are being used less and less, giving way to mobile devices based on radio communications. Since the latter in most tariffs do not need to make monthly subscription fees, the cost of their use is even lower than that of stationary counterparts. At first glance, it may seem that when using wired telephones, no questions can arise because the technology is old and well-researched. But this is true for the developer, not for the simple user of this phone.

For example, sometimes companies and banking institutions in their contact details indicate a toll-free number, calling on which you can solve many issues. Usually on the other side of the phone the phone is picked up by an answering machine, during the conversation asking the subscriber to press certain numbers (turn the dial). Alas, for many on this call ends, because the answering machine does not react to the actions with the phone, ignoring the pressing of buttons. Why?

The reason is simple - there is a pulse and tone mode of the phone. For sure, everyone heard strange clicks or whistles accompanying pressing numbers or dialing a number using a disc. The beeps are a tonal mode, and the clicks are pulsed. Let's look at how the number dials in old disk phones.

When the disc is rotated to the desired distance and automatically returns to its original position, special electrical contacts are closed: each closure generates a click-pulse, counting the number, you can determine the number to be dialed and, accordingly, the number. This "counting" is involved in equipment at the station (ATS). Simple and effective. In newer phone models, the contacts are replaced by a special pulse generator, which, by the way, can also be switched to tone mode.

Subsequently, the impulse set was replaced by a more technological tonal (tone). It dials the number is not bits, but by modulating AC with the right frequency. Each digit (button) has its own signal tone. Further everything is similar: PBX perceives a combination of tones and converts them into a dialed phone number. Tone mode is more noise-free (dialing errors now depend entirely on the care of the owner, not on the network status), and also allows for faster connection to the subscriber. All modern phones are tone, pulse mode in them may be completely absent.

By the way, it is believed that tone mode provides a higher quality of sound. This is only half true. To work in the tone mode it must be supported by both telephone and PBX. Attempting to use a new phone on a pulse PBX will not give any advantages (if, in general, the device will work). The stations calculated for tone mode are digital (or mixed), unlike analog impulse ones. Hence the improvement of sound.

A programmable pulse generator allows you to put the phone into a tone mode and operate both impulse and tone networks. Suppose that the subscriber is served by an analog PBX. To transfer the phone to pulse dialing mode, it is usually necessary to press and hold the "*" (asterisk) button for a few seconds. If this does not help, then turn the device over and examine the bottom cover - often there is a small toggle switch for selecting the mode. Switching to a tone set is similar.

Now let's return to the example given at the beginning of the article. Owners of disk phones connected to analog stations, about communicating with an answering machine that requires pressing any buttons, can forget, since without additional equipment this is impossible. The output, of course, is - it's a special prefix that generates tone signals to the network, but you'll have to forget about convenience.

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