Asian Geographic




Thomas Doolittle reportedly created what could be the first pay phone by placing a telephone in Bridgeport and another in Black Rock, Connecticu­t in wooden booths and connecting them using a telegraph wire.


The first phone booth known as a telephone cabinet was patented. The space that measured 1.2 by 1.5 metres had a desk inside and wheels attached to enable movement.


American William Gray invented the coin-operated payphone. It was a postpay system, so users paid after they made their calls.


A mechanism to return deposited coins when calls are not made successful­ly was developed.

Early 1900s:

Outdoor phone booths were installed in the US (replaced by glass and aluminium ones when they became common in the 1950s).


The first public phone kiosk, the K1, was introduced in the UK. The iconic red colour wasnt applied until 1924 with the K2. The classic red telephone box is the smaller 1935 K6 design.


The British colonial government formed Singapore Telephone Board (renamed Singtel as we know it today), which provided the first public payphones to Singapore residents.


The Singapore Telephone Board introduced the Coinafon, an iconic squarish orange coin-operated payphone that used to be found commonly at coffee and provision shops.

1992: The

Telecommun­ication Authority of Singapore opened the telecommun­ication market to private operators.


Telecoms installed its first card phone in Singapore in a one-year trial to gauge public acceptance.

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