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Key Telephone Systems

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Note: Many topics at this site are reduced versions of the text in "The Encyclopedia of Networking and Telecommunications." Search results will not be as extensive as a search of the book's CD-ROM.

Often referred to as just KTS, a key telephone system is a premises telephone system that is best known by the phones that have buttons for calling inside an organization and for placing calls outside through the public telephone network. A key telephone system is in the same category as a PBX (private branch exchange), except that key systems rely on the telephone company switching equipment, while PBXs rely on a central control unit located at the customer site. In other words, with a key system, the dial tone is generated at the telephone company central office. A full PBX generates its own dial tones. Key systems also do not require dialing a number to gain an outside line since all lines are already directly connected to the telephone company central office. On a PBX system, lines are connected to the PBX, and the PBX makes connections to the central office when the outside number is dialed.

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