Did you know, April is a significant month in the history of telephones! For example, on 14th April in 1983, the UK’s first cordless telephone was released – it was able to operate up to a distance of 600 feet from its base. Manufactured by Fidelity and British Telecom, it retailed at £170 – which is equivalent to £401.08 in today’s money!
On 25th April each year, National Telephone Day is celebrated to commemorate the day of 25th April in 1876 – just 19 years before JB Springs was founded in 1895. On this date, Alexander Graham Bell spoke the first words through his new invention of the telephone to his assistant Thomas Watson – “Mr Watson, come here. I want to see you”.
38 years later, it’s estimated that there are now 4.8 billion mobile phone users across the world! This is relatively unsurprising, given the way technology has become ever-present and indispensable in modern times.
Though not immediately evident, springs are a key component of mobile and landline phones alike! Even in the classic rotary dial landline phones, the wheel used to select the digits operates against a spring – which allows it to return to its original position between number selections. It was in the late 19th century when this development was made to return the dial. The first patent for a rotary dial was granted in 1892 to Almon Brown Strowger, but it wouldn’t be until 1904 when the now-common design with holes would be introduced.
A spring could also be found in the original ‘gravity switches’ of old-style telephones. When the receiver wasn’t being used, it would be hung on a spring-loaded hook. The weight of the receiver would allow the hook to depress and disconnect a call – if the receiver was left ‘off the hook’ it would not be able to receive incoming calls.
It then wasn’t until the 1980s when the familiar push-button phone we use today were commonplace across the UK and the US. Push-button phones were trialled in UK post offices in 1965 but weren’t properly integrated across homes until 1975. Springs were also used in this new design of telephone – with springs still being required within the phone buttons for them to be pushed and return to their previous, ‘unpushed’ form.
The phones of the present-day use springs too – but in a very different way to their predecessors. For a modern mobile phone to vibrate upon receiving a call or notification, a miniature motor, with an even smaller – yet vital – spring, is within it, which carries the electric current and is key for transferring power into the motor to move the rotor wire windings. Also, there is most likely a spring involved in any button on your phone which can be pushed!
Wireforms can also be found in most mobile phones – given their ability to be created in a wide variety of custom shapes, they can be shaped for use as clips, pins and a whole host of other common phone parts.
To discover more about the many uses of springs and wireform, our work created them or how we can help to provide you with quality spring products or services, complete the form on our Contact Page, email us at email@example.com or get in touch through our social media channels.