Private Automatic Branch Exchange

What Does Private Automatic Branch Exchange Mean?

Private automatic branch exchange (PABX) is a technology used by call centers and other large organizations that allows a single access number to provide several lines to outside callers while providing a range of external lines to internal callers or staff. PABX performs all the switching necessary for making internal calls between extensions within the organizations. It also allows provides a connection between extensions and external phone lines.


PABX is the improved version of the private branch exchange (PBX).

Techopedia Explains Private Automatic Branch Exchange

In PABX, the exchange is owned and managed by the private organization in which it is installed and relies on computer equipment to handle the switching of calls. This is why the system is considered both private and automatic.

With PABX, an operator is only required to supply information and to occasionally manual connections for callers who are unfamiliar with system or the organization.


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Margaret Rouse is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical, business audience. Over the past twenty years her explanations have appeared on TechTarget websites and she's been cited as an authority in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine and Discovery Magazine.Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages. If you have a suggestion for a new definition or how to improve a technical explanation, please email Margaret or contact her…