10 forgotten wonders of 1980s homes

Jim Brain brain at jbrain.com
Wed Dec 30 13:24:19 CST 2015

On 12/30/2015 12:12 PM, Chuck Guzis wrote:

<awesome snippets of telco gear description snipped>
> All of this has me wondering how long it's going to be before POTS 
> completely disappears from the infrastructure.  I've been 
> experimenting with one of the Obihai VoIP boxes and have been 
> pleasantly surprised at the quality.  I haven't tried yet to see if 
> the 554 rotary dial wall phones in my garage and shop will still 
> work.  They were installed in 1980--so that ties this in with the 
> subject material.
I am not worthy of this conversation, but I will put in what little I can.

We were spoiled in South Dakota, as somehow (and I am sure someone knows 
and will enlighten us/me) the rural telcos (LECs?)  tapped into lots of 
funds from somewhere to drop fiber to all of the rural homes.  50Mb was 
the slowest speed, as I recall, for data.  The catch was that you had to 
buy a telephone service with your Internet, probably for some 
legal/regulatory reason.  But, it was cheap, and we bought just the 
basics, and 50Mb was more than one could expect when you are 8 miles 
from the nearest town and on a large acreage.  So, in markets where this 
type of service is offered, I think telcos will thrive.

When we moved to Iowa, we found a choice large acreage just minutes from 
the edge of town, but POTS service was so expensive compared to our SD 
options.  We went with office grade cellular Internet (unlimited 4G) and 
I bought one of those Internet to phone dongles for pennies online.  In 
a small twist, though, I disconnected our house telephone wiring from 
the telco and simply plugged the dongle into our house telephone 
wiring.  Now, we have all the phones in the house connected to phone 
service through our cellular connection.

I am sure it is not that original, but my touch phones don't know the 
difference (like you, I have not tried my rotary with the extra long 
cord), and it is $10.00/year versus $35.00/month for POTS.



Jim Brain
brain at jbrain.com

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