How Are Springs Used In Phones?

Categories: News, Springtelligence|529 words|2.6 min read|By |Published On: April 20th, 2021|

April is a significant month in the history of telephones. On 14th April 1983, the UK’s first cordless telephone became available – it could 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! In this blog, we look at the history of phones and answer the question ‘How are springs used in phones?’. 

On 25th April each year, National Telephone Day commemorates this day in 1876 – just 19 years before JB Springs’ founding 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 in the world and the average length of time spent on mobile phones is 3.7 hours each day! This is relatively unsurprising, given the way technology has become ever-present and indispensable in modern times.

Springs in phones

Though not immediately evident, springs are a key component of mobile and landline phones alike! Even in the rotary dial phones of the late 19th century, the wheel to select digits operates against a spring. This allows it to return to its original position between number selections. 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.

The original ‘gravity switches’ of old-style telephones also used springs. The receiver hung on a spring-loaded hook while not in use; the weight of the receiver depressed the hook – disconnecting a call. If the phone was ‘off the hook’, it would not receive incoming calls.

It wasn’t until the 1980s when the 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. This new design also required springs in the buttons to compress under pressure and return to their previous, ‘unpushed’ form.

How are springs used in phones today?

You can find springs in phones in the present day too – but in a very different way to their predecessors. A miniature motor enables a modern mobile phone to vibrate upon receiving a call or notification; this small motor contains an even smaller – yet vital – spring. This spring carries the electric current and transfers power to move the rotor wire windings. Also, there is most likely a spring involved in any push-button on your phone!

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 compression springs, tension springs, torsion springs or wireform parts, our work creating them, or how we can help to provide you with quality spring products and services, complete the form on our Contact Page, email us at or get in touch through our social media channels.