“What use could this company make of an electric toy?”


A quote from William Orton, President Western Union as he turned down the rights to the telephone in 1878. Alexander Graham had approached Orton and provided him the option to purchase all patents for the telephone for $100,000.

Apparently Orton didn’t foresee the disruptive innovative impact that the telephone would have.  At the time, the telegraph dominated the communications industry. Over  215,000  miles of telegraph wires carried over 31,703,181 messages delivered  through 8,500 telegraph offices.

Never be too comfortable with the staus quo.


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