Phones in this section are not restricted for PBX/CENTREX use; they can be used for any 1-line application as well. However, many are ideally suited for the PBX/CENTREX environment because of special features such as flash keys, message waiting lamps, or feature keys which can be programmed for CENTREX or PBX feature codes.
Please see our list of Centrex-compatible phones after What You Need to Know About Centrex
What You Need to Know About Centrex
Centrex is a service provided by your local phone company, sometimes under various service marks; here in New England, we have a Centrex service called CustoPak, which is a service mark of Verizon. Regardless of the name, there are several things about Centrex you should understand before buying phones to use with Centrex services.
Centrex is a service originally intended to provide multi-location businesses with the ability to tie their locations together as though (from a telephone standpoint) they were in one location. Universities with large campuses (and multiple campuses), chain stores, and other multi-location organizations have benefited from Centrex.
The big benefit is that phones in the same Centrex group can put callers on hold, transfer calls to other phones in the organization, hold conference calls across multiple locations, even page from one location to another (with appropriate paging hardware).
Accessing these Centrex features usually involves "flashing" the line and dialing Centrex access codes and/or the extension number of a destination phone (usually the last 3 or 4 digits of their telephone number) "Flashing" simply means depressing the hookswitch briefly, which signals the Centrex central office that you want to put the caller on hold and access Centrex features. To make line flashing easier, any phone used with Centrex should have a FLASH KEY.
In addition, if you have regular destinations that you send a lot of calls to, you will probably want some one-touch memory buttons to store those destination extensions numbers. And, if you use any Centrex feature access codes, you may want to store these in one-touch memory buttons as well.
Last, to make call transfers easier, you may wish to store frequently transferred-to destinations with a flash, a pause, and the number, all under one memory button; to accomplish this, your phone must have a programmable flash and pause capability.