February 2014
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Old ATT promotional video

I found this old ATT promotional video from 1967.  It mainly concerns the PSTN wired network reliability.

It’s a mildly hoaky propaganda piece, but we often forget how our modern communications infrastructure is very young.  If ATT seems proud of their system, they had a right to be.  Prior to electronic communications, you wrote a letter and hoped that it arrived.

There is also this video: What is the Bell System.

If you have the time, there are many interesting archive videos in the ATT Tech Channel.  Be careful, one can spend a lot of time watching these videos!

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5 comments to Old ATT promotional video

  • They made a lot of money off that copper network. They even had video running over copper across towns (twinax).

  • Jim Seaman

    People often forget how big the Bell System was, and how standardized and reliable the level of service and equipment had become. It really was the eighth wonder of the world until Judge Greene broke up AT&T in 1984.

    I still have one of the headsets that the man at 6:50 is holding, they had dual 1/4″ mono plugs on the cord for plugging into the side of a keyset. Down in my basement I also have one of the key system speakerphone units the man at 9:19 is using along with bits of a 1A2 KSU. I still remember the little, brown Bell System vans running around town when I was a kid.

  • Bill Frahm

    Water could be feet deep in the road and the power was out and you still had dial tone.

  • I’ve heard they have active equipment in those manholes,too.

  • …Ahh, the 1A2 KSU! Many happy hours I spent with an almost completely predictable telephone system you could *see* working. Yes, those were the days. Built my own telephone-talk-show box around a modified speakerphone and a hand-hacked two-line conferencing/switching system; as far as the 1A2 knew, it was just another pair of ten-button phones. (Also learned you can’t use colored wax to fill in engraved push-putton caps if they have even tiny lamps in ’em: at the end of the first show, the host had colorful fingertipe! Model paint or nail polish works but there’s a trick to getting it to stick only in the engraving.)

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