Automatic Telephone Dialer


So this gadget stored a few phone numbers and allowed the convenience of one-button dialing. Would such functionality have been worth $360.00 even in 1978?

Original ad here.

     Posted By: Paul - Mon Feb 02, 2015
     Category: Technology | Telephones | 1970s

In answer to your question, Paul, yes. Anything high tech in a business setting gives the perception of forward thinking on part of management.

My high school chemistry instructor bought an electronic calculator that was capable of performing four math functions and square roots in 1973. Mr. Warburton told me that he paid about $100.00 for his machine. It was about 6 inches on a side, two inches thick, weighed maybe three pounds and ran on 120 volts power. When I was in his class in 1975 we had access to pocket-sized (nearly) battery powered machines performing the same functions and they were priced at about $75.00.

I noticed that in my local grocery store a display of calculators that perform four math functions, square root and memory addition / subtraction. All for the price of $4.98. Or equivalent to $0.93 in 1973 dollars.
Posted by KDP on 02/02/15 at 10:14 AM
A few years after this came out I suggested to a cousin who was in management at AT&T that they should mount a small screen on a CD of a phone directory that fit under the phone.

"There will never be a need for something like that.", was the answer.
Posted by Expat47 in Athens, Greece on 02/02/15 at 10:46 AM
All this tech we enjoy started somewhere and the evolution was not instantanious.
Posted by Patty in Ohio, USA on 02/02/15 at 04:07 PM
I remember this, and then a 99 number 'demon dialer' I lived with a man who owned his own business and found it well worth the money. Think about it this way - is the phone book in your cell phone worth it? Don't you find it easier to memorize all your contacts, or to scribble them down in a little book?
Posted by aruvqan myers on 02/02/15 at 08:43 PM
Nope. Not buyin' it. This is totally phony.
Posted by Jeremy M Brown on 02/04/15 at 01:30 PM
Yes, In 1980 I paid PacBell $ 100.00 install plus a monthly rental fee for one that had 100 buttons that could each be loaded with 1 number each. I liked they way it dialed the numbers so fast when I was trying to get through to the Building Department.
Posted by Ed Dart on 02/04/15 at 11:12 PM
Egad ~~~ I'm still in the generation where you do the math in your to check.
Posted by BMN on 02/05/15 at 11:28 AM
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