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27th Aug 2018

Irish institution The Speaking Clock sounds off for the final time

Dave Hanratty

Speaking Clock shut down

All good things must come to an end…

And so it is that vintage Irish institution The Speaking Clock has told people the time for the last time ever, and now its watch has ended.

Established almost 50 years ago, the service told callers who dialled 1911 the time and still received daily calls in 2018 despite a notable decrease in use over recent years.

As of Monday 27 August, the clock shall speak no more.

A spokesperson for Eir confirmed to JOE on Monday that the service has officially been shut down.

“The Speaking Clock was initially established almost five decades ago and during its peak the service attracted close to three million calls annually,” said the spokesperson.

“Technology has moved on and the proliferation of mobile phones and gadgets has caused a steady, predictable decline in the numbers of people using the service.”

Eir note that though people were still availing of the Speaking Clock up until its termination, the amount of calls is not large enough to justify maintaining the system.

“Six months ago we began to let service users know, via the service, that the speaking clock will close, today, Monday, 27th August 2018,” the statement concluded.

Proof, as ever, that you don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone.

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