Article on Ambassador telephones

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S1 B8013
FEB 1981

This Circular is a re-issue of S1 B8013 and gives further details of the arrangements for the phased launch for the basic version of a New Generation Telephone (NGT) to be marketed as the "AMBASSADOR" range, at a premium tariff.  They will be coded in the Rate Book as the "8000" series telephone.

The "Ambassador" range incorporated a completely new modular design with a number of new distinctive features including a lower profile which is more suitable for press-button operation, together with a new handset which is comfortable to use and is mounted vertically.  It represents an attractive addition to our range giving customers the benefit of wider choice, extra facilities and features as well as improved reliability.

The new telephones form part of a wider range of design related products, have a profile and general styling similar to other new products such as the Loud-speaking Telephone No. 8, the "Herald" call connect system terminals and the "Monarch" (CDSS1) PABX console.  The telephones have a number of interesting features:-

  1. The instrument can be free standing, or, in the case of the 'Basic' version, situated on a specially provided shelf.
  2. A specially designed recess is included in the left-hand side of the telephone making it easy to carry from one position to another.
  3. A four position volume control for the bell/tone caller (off - soft medium - loud) is incorporated in the design. Later versions will only have off loud and soft.
  4. Extra facility buttons have been built into the keypad.
  5. An information panel is incorporated in the 'flip up' panel beneath the telephone label.
  6. Additionally, the line cord inlet in the base of the telephone has been specially designed to allow cable access from either the rear or left or right sides of the telephone.
  7. The new Handset No. 16 incorporates a linear microphone.

The AMBASSADOR range will consist of two similarly styled types of telephone comprising a "Basic" and a "Plan" version each of which has been designed to cater for dial or press-button working.  The "Plan" version is for use specifically with a new small electronic switching system which will be the subject of a separate circular.  Easy to use and flexible in operation they are suitable for both public network or PBX use.  Press-button versions will be available with either loop disconnect (Strowger) or MF signalling.

All variants will be fitted with a four position volume control governing the bell/tone caller - off, soft, medium and loud.

An initial order 70,000 instruments is now in production and this will comprise five variants as follows:-

Self-contained with Bell.
Self-contained with Tone Caller and on-hook dialling.
MF with Bell.
MF with Tone-caller and on-hook dialling.
Dial with Bell.
The range will be available in a variant offering "On-hook dialling" as a new feature. This will enable calls to be established without lifting the handset; call progress being monitored by means of a small loudspeaker.

This facility is controlled by means of a dedicated "Send" button. When the called party answers, the handset is lifted and used in the normal way. (Those telephones fitted with the "On-hook dialling" facility are equipped with a tone caller which "doubles" as the "loudspeaker" transducer).

Later versions of the range of telephones will have the option of incorporating repertory calling with up to 10 stored numbers and a repeat last number facility.

The initial production order will provide a choice of 4 colours:-

Mid grey
Dark brown

Each of the various types of press-button instrument will come equipped with a 16 button keypad comprising the ten digits, * "star" and square buttons for use with MF and four "facility" buttons to cater for recall, repertory calling (transmit and program) and send for the use with "on-hook dialling".  If not required, the latter button can be redeployed for use with "plan" working.

The AMBASSADOR range will cater for "earth" and "timed DC break" recall and all telephones on the initial order will have a recall button.

The suffix to the telephone number indicates the type of recall provided e.g. 8---R is earth recall
8---AR is alternative recall (supplied timed DC break).

Where this facility is not required the button will need to be locked in position. Later supplies will meet this need as a delivered variant.

A small quantity of MF instruments coded with suffix AR will be strappable to either "earth" or "timed DC break" recall. These will be delivered "strapped" to the latter and will be available (in stone colour only) for use where register recall is required.

The new range will use high impedance calling devices.  Variants using a bell will incorporate the high impedance 'Bell 79".  Where an 8000 series telephone is used in conjunction with an existing low impedance instrument the installation should be re-terminated and the existing telephone converted to have high impedance ringers (an extra quantity of "Bells 79D" have been ordered to meet the needs of the initial order).  The straps inside the existing telephone also need to be rearranged.  This work on the telephone should not be carried out at the customers premises.

All instruments can be free standing, or casually wall mounted using a purpose built shelf where it may be used in position or lifted off for use elsewhere. The brackets and mounting plates will need to be separately requisitioned.

Permanent wall mounting will not now be available for the 70,000 initial production.

The connection of the line and handset cords to the telephone is by an internal plug and socket thus simplifying maintenance procedures.  For the initial purchase 70,000 telephones, the method of termination to line will be by means of a Jack No. 620A which incorporates a captive plug and socket arrangement.

In order to achieve early introduction of the AMBASSADOR range, special arrangements have been made for the production of 70,000 instruments to an accelerate programme.  Initial supplies will not however support full-scale national marketing and available stock will be used to launch the product in selected areas as the first stage of a programme of phased introduction.

Following the product trial the balance of available supplies will be used to meet orders in the NETR and LTR regions only.  The initial production quantity will not include the repertory calling option.  General availability will be achieved progressively on a geographical basis as supplies permit.  A product trial of the 'Plan' version and the new small Electronic Switching system will be conducted in mid 1981, details of which will be given in a further circular.

An allocation of telephones and ancillary equipment will be made by THQ to the two Regions prior to commencement of the launch and a PH leaflet will be produced describing the benefits of each of the variants, followed by a leaflet in the DL series.

The 8000 series telephone will not cater for shared service working. They can be used on the following installations:-

DEL (exclusive only)
Plan 1A
Plan 4
Combination of Plan 1A and Plan 4
2-wire PBX extensions (with or without recall)
C wire PBX single extensions
"B" end of Plan 105 (connected as external extension only)
"B" end Plan 107 (external only)

Initially it will not be possible to interwork the AMBASSADOR range of telephones with any of the Special Range Telephones.

The standard procedures applying to the ordering and hand-stamping of telephone number labels described in TI D6 E4500 will also apply to AMBASSADOR telephone labels. Orders should not however be placed until Areas/Regions/ Boards are advised by ME/RCS1.1.2, that stocks are available.

As the Basic AMBASSADOR, although different in appearance and internal arrangements from the current Tele 746, does not call for any new installation or maintenance skills, it is not intended to provide formal training for current staff. A comprehensive handbook has been produced for the staff concerned.

A full description of the AMBASSADOR is given in C3 B1980. The new range should be installed in accordance with the 8000 series of Diagrams in the Installation/Maintenance Handbook.

In-service maintenance performance will be studied. The AN duty and the RSCs involved will be advised by the Installation Controls when and where the study telephones are fitted. The AN duty will complete installation registers and associate the fault cards with survey envelopes to alert fault distribution officers and faults men when fault reports may be due to study telephones. THQ/ES5.2.1 will arrange for inspection of fault cards to make assessments of the telephones performance.

The instruments will be 'E' controlled. Launch plans have been finalised with the Regions and Areas concerned, and arrangements have been made for direct deliveries of an initial quantity to both Regions. Requisitions will not be accepted from any other Area. The 'E' Control Duty will be E46 (RCS2.1.1.1). It must be emphasised that these instruments are high value stores and strict control should be exercised. Continuing supplies will only be issued against proven sales.

AMBASSADOR telephones should NOT be fitted on service installations.

Maintenance of the AMBASSADOR Telephones is very similar to that of current telephones in the 700 type range.

Maintenance activities Will consist of changing modular items of the telephone; initially line-cordage, handset and handset cordage and the dial on dial instruments. Press-button AMBASSADOR Telephones, will be maintained as dial instruments. Maintenance should not be attempted on the keypad, if proved faulty, the whole instrument should be changed out.

A handbook has been produced which includes maintenance details, diagrams and a list of available spares. Maintenance queries should, at this time, be directed to ME/BS4.4.2.

Since the "AMBASSADOR" phased launch is restricted to two Regions, an appropriate localised advertising campaign will be run to promote awareness and sales of the new instrument. Regions and Areas will be advised of the details of such a campaign by means of a Sales Promotion Note. When the AMBASSADOR is nationally available the Business market will, in the main, be covered by means of "Telecomms", our own national marketing magazine which is mailed to 300,000 renters of Keymasters and switching systems. The AMBASSADOR will also be prominently featured at exhibitions (both Business and Residential), in Sales Bureaux and in Telephone Shops.

All these promotional activities will be supported by a new Publicity Handout. If required, a poster could also be produced for exhibition/Bureau/Shop use. In addition, the AMBASSADOR will eventually be included in the DL range of leaflets, appropriate PH leaflets and in revised reprints of the new Green Pages.

Staff Associations have been informed of this project and sent copies of this circular. ECOPC have also been informed.

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Last revised: July 14, 2022