Calling over the decades


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  • Thursday, 31 Aug 2017

Over the years, the look and use of the telephone has changed in Malaysia. Here is its evolution in the last 60 years.

 1950sCoin Collecting Box AB Black was the first public phone to be used in the country. Several versions of the AB Black phones were introduced throughout this decade. — FAIHAN GHANI/The Star.

1950s

Coin Collecting Box AB Black is the first public phone to be used in Malaya, with several versions introduced throughout this decade.

 1960sThe Ericofon by Swedish phone company Ericsson made its way here. — FAIHAN GHANI/The Star.

1960s

The lightweight Ericofon by Ericsson makes its way here. In 1965, telephone directories are given to customers who own a phone line.

 1970sThe Tamura 52 SP, made in Japan, was one of the widely used public phones in the 70s.— FAIHAN GHANI/The Star

1970s

The Japanese Tamura 52 SP is one of the widely used public phones. Home users start using the ITT Face Standard dial telephones.

 The Atur 450 was introduced by Telekom Malaysia in 1985. — Muzium Telekom

1980s

Cellular phones reach Malaysian shores. The Atur 450 is introduced by Telekom Malaysia in 1985, with Vodafone, Motorola, Nokia and Panasonic taking the lead in production.

 Nokia 5110

1990s

The Nokia Cityman, Motorola MicroTac, and Nokia 5110 are some of the popular phones of this era. However, they offer less than five hours of talk time.

 The evolution from purely functional mobile phones to fashionable phones. Shown here is the Nokia 3310.-- picture from www.nokia.com

2000s

Nokia rules the beginning of the decade with its 3210 and 3310, but by the end of it, Malaysians are either on #teamblackberry or #teamiPhone.

 Samsung Galaxy S8

2010s to now

More smartphones brands emerge, with South Korean tech giant Samsung in particular growing from strength to strength. The Chinese players also enter the game with brands such as Huawei, Xiaomi, Oppo, Vivo and Lenovo.

The first telephone directory in Malaya was released in 1937, and was only 1cm thick. Back in the days of manual exchange, telephone operators only had to dial one number to reach the customer’s phone line.
The first telephone directory in Malaya was released in 1937, and was only 1cm thick. Back in the days of manual exchange, telephone operators only had to dial one number to reach the customer’s phone line.

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