Phones – A Biography of Phonemes

Phones are handy and convenient in today’s digitalized society. They provide us with many of the functions that we rely on every day, such as telephones for personal and business purposes. However, what are phones made of? The materials that makeup phones are indeed pretty interesting and varied – and they have become increasingly customized over time.

Phones in Linguistics

Phones, as we know them today, are mostly sold as devices built-in in mobile phones (and smartphones). Phones can also be purchased as separate units. In phonics and linguistics, a telephone is any different human voice or sound, no matter how critical its meanings to other people, if the sound is vital to the meaning of the words. Phones are general and not specific to any particular language, but unique phonemes are often talked about only in relation to certain languages. There are a few basic models of phones, from which you can choose.

Full phones are, first and foremost, devices that contain a built-in dictionary. Phonemes, words that stand for single phonetic letters or combinations of phonetic letters, are represented in the phone by a set of phonemic representations. Phonemic representations are the linguistic equivalent of speech sounds and are thus a great deal more complex than the representations you hear when reading a book or watching television. For example, the phonemic representation of the word “the” in the sentence “The man with the dog the tree” is “t”, “u”, “I”, “a”, “the” and “u”. All of these are distinct phonemic representations of the same word, though they are all ultimately just variations on the basic root “the”.

Full phones

Full phones, as their name suggests, include both the underlying phonemes and the phonetic spelling of the word. Phonemic phonemes are the single phonetic letters that make up the basic unit of speech. This is how they are stored in memory (as individual words) and transferred to the phone when spoken. Phonemic spelling, however, has nothing to do with the sound of the letters. A different set of phonetic spelling is used for each letter in the word, which makes the phonemic representation of a single word slightly more complicated.

Phones which employ phonetic transcription are those which are designed to allow you to record an entire conversation without the need to record every single word the speaker uses. Phonetic transcription is the process of converting spoken words into text using only the phonetic transcriptions of those words that will be understood by the person who is speaking. Phonetic transcription has been used for years in the medical and scientific fields, and is now being used in many education and communication situations. Some phones that employ phonetic transcription (which include most cell phones) incorporate their own vocabulary which can be accessed by listening to voice-recognition software.

Phones which employ the service of speech recognition technology can recognize individual spoken phonemes and change one word or a selected set of words for each spoken tone or pitch. Phones that have been adapted to the needs of deaf and hard-of-hearing people to enable them to communicate using spoken words, which includes phonemes, as well as written words. Some phones, which are designed for use by hearing-impaired users, incorporate a virtual keyboard on the screen, which can be pressed as the user speaks and indicates the word he wants to change. The telephone will then automatically display the word or words in the appropriate font and size.

Technology in Phones

Phones which are capable of speech recognition technology are the modern equivalent of computers. Allophones, which are capable of distinguishing individual phonemes from background noise, have had a huge impact on the quality of phone conversations. When two or more people engage in a telephone conversation, it is very difficult to listen to one person’s voice due to the increased level of background noise. This is especially problematic if the source of the sound is a television, whose volume is louder than most other ambient sounds. Phones that are equipped with digital signal processing circuitry are able to reduce the level of background noise and therefore improve the quality of the conversations. Digital signal processing also ensures that when the telephone rings, the sound of the phone does not ring every time, thereby ensuring that people with hearing problems do not have to bear the constant noise.


There are many new features that have been added to Phones over the years to make communicating easier for people of all ages. Phones which incorporate the services of speech recognition, allophones, and digital signal processing have made communicating more interesting, fun, and easy. Phones, which allow users to hear and speak only phonemes, are the modern equivalent of earlier telephone equipment, which played phonemes and pronounced them.