Phone of the Day: Nortel M9617 Analog Unified Communications Personal Call Manager Telephone

Around 1998, Nortel was still manufacturing small business and residential analog telephones. The meridian 9000 and 8000 analog telephones or released in 1993. These telephones replaced the rather obscure unity analog telephones. This particular telephone took features of a large office with unified messaging and integrated it into a small analog telephone. This particular phone actually contains firmware that appears that can be updated via the options button.The phone is an exact copy of the M9417 but includes a USB port on the back to connect the phone to a PC.

I am not too fond of the cheap looking time and date on the bottom of the telephones display.  I can’t quite figure out why Nortel designed the cheap looking time and date pixels in the second generation “CW”call waiting display telephones.  All three lines of pixel text quality should match.  This annoying characteristic has carried over to the Aastra and now Mitel branded sets.

A friend sent me this set, and it works, although it’s a bit strange, the volume on the handset is really low on both lines.  Hands free is loud and clear but the handset is quite low volume.  It could have sown thing to do with age.  Although the phone is beautifully new and was sealed in the box from 1999, maybe some capacitors that control the handset have started to leak or who knows what else.  The CD Rom didn’t work on my Windows 10 PC either, but it was worth a try.
This phone must have been quite revolutionary for an analog telephone when introduced in 1999.  

Although this set was discontinued soon after Aastra took over the Nortel analog business phones production in 2000, it’s twin M9417 set still survives and is manufactured by Mitel, yes Mitel!