Toll free number Evolution
The use of Toll free number established in a short time and history. It’s hard to forget that only does it have a history but it has a short history like that.
In past, the toll free number was termed as Zenith number. The Zenith number allowed a customer to call an operator within a specific community, who then connected the caller to the desired number. Although some Zenith numbers still exist, they have mostly fallen into disuse, due in part to the decreasing cost of toll free number assignments and as such, almost no new Zenith numbers have issued for some time.
Before toll free number introduced. The only way for a caller to reach a business for free was to place a collect call through a telephone operator. Upon the request of the caller and acceptance of the receiver, the charges would reverse. But in 1967, AT&T introduced toll free calling to the United States.
They created specialized telephone numbers that made a call free for the person dialing the number, no matter where they were located in the US. The “800” prefix told telephone companies that the owner of the telephone number would pick up the long distance charges.
Toll free number (800 number) Birth
The 1-800 phone number(toll free number) as we know it was developed in the late 1960s by AT&T. Prior to their introduction, businesses relied on a wide area telephone service (WATS) for customers to contact them free of charge.
The lines divided into inbound and outbound lines, depending on who doing the calling. WATS lines were operated by private branch exchanges. These were quickly replaced when AT&T launched the inWATS collect call system on May 2, 1967.
The Growth of Toll Free Numbers
The popularity of toll free number has boomed over the past couple of decades, resulting in the addition of five more toll-free prefix numbers: 1-888, 1-877, 1-866, 1-855 and 1-844. The first, 1-888, introduced in 1996, with 1-877 and 1-866 introduced two years later. It wasn’t until 2010 that 1-855 introduced into regular use. 1-844 just launched in December 2013.
Despite used predominantly by business and corporations, toll free number purchase by individuals for personal use. Examples of this include musicians looking to establish a single number for booking shows or other appearances.
These entities have a database that includes listings of what numbers are available. Numbers given out on a first-come, first-serve basis. A reputable toll free service provider also may have an inventory of numbers available for personal and company use.
Although millions of companies use 1800 and 1888 phone numbers (and their variations). The increasing online presence of most nationwide businesses has resulted in their sharing space. With email and live chat services as a means of directly connecting with the customer (toll free number). Despite this, toll free number is thriving, with everyone from multi-billion corporations to entrepreneurs working out of a small one-bedroom apartment using them. They’re affordable and can help establish a sense of legitimacy that gives your business or brand a nationwide and even global presence.