Today’s phone model has been featured before on this blog, but I wanted to show it again in a different place, my girlfriends sisters place.
This power touch set is about the most advanced analog set you can get on the market. There are a few similar sets in this model family, both older and newer.
Ok before I show the actual telephone, here is some history and older phone screenshots.
Nortel originally developed and manufactured this telephone around 1993 as the Vista 350 with a module or cartridge that would slide into the base phone depending on what model the telephone was. See screenshot photos below:
Around 2000 Nortel decided to sell off its Nortel MDC M5000 Centrex “P” phones and Small Business Analog Sets (Vista, Maestro, Jazz, Interlude, M8000/M9000 Meridian Business sets) to Aastra Telecom. Aastra was begun by a small group of Nortel engineers who worked in the terminals division at Nortel and hit it big by going on their own and the being selected as a contractor by Nortel Networks for manufacturing Nortel Networks telephones as a third party telecom vendor.
The brochure below shows the obvious transition from Nortel Networks to Aastra. The brochure is done up in a Nortel Networks font and design and even talks about Nortel Networks, but it contains all Aastra logos:
There are a few newer versions of this set made by Aastra now Mitel, but I’ll save those for another post.
So today’s phone I originally was writing about at the beginning of the post is shown below:
It’s in a home office. Normally more of the display buttons would be programmed but when this phone was designed you needed to go online on Aastras website, fill in button labels and then call a 1800 number to upload the features into the screen. Unfortunately you have to use an old school copper POTS line to do this, as I have tried using analog VOIP by ATT and Comcast and the download fails.
Here is the website:
Here are some screenshots of the description of the telephone. It’s chock full of features and buttons. The buttons and handset are the familiar Nortel assemblies, and function identically to a Nortel Digital Telephone.
What I also find interesting about this telephone is that it comes with disconnect supervision. It only works while you are on a Handsfree call. If you are connected on a Handsfree call and the other party hangs up, the line releases and automatically disconnects the call without having to press the goodbye button. That’s the first time I’ve ever seen that on an analog telephone.
Only problem is that when you are on the handset, the disconnect supervision doesn’t work at all.
Next here are some photos of entering a number into the directory on the telephone:
The phone also has an options button which lets you personalize the telephone. The ring tones are variants of the Norstar and BCM ring tones.
The phone also possesses extensive Caller ID capabilities and logging:
Call waiting CLID also works on this telephone quite nicely:
Ironically these two different CLID entires I just picked show Nortel product names “Meridian” and “Vista!”
So if you are looking for a very advanced digital PBX styled analog telephone for your home office, small business or even for analog extensions on a PBX, this would be a great phone to buy. You can find them rather inexpensively on eBay. I bought a box of 20 for $22 on eBay, including the power supplies..
Fyi, the Shoreline branding is from when Shoretel was a small company using open sourced PBX resources and they branded their name on these analog phones for use on the original Shoretel switches.
Lastly, my only two gripes about the phone is the large skinny LED numbers on the display and the fact that programming the soft keys is near impossible without an old POTS line.