The new telephone exchange equipment offered vertical service code calling features such as call forwarding and call waiting, but often was incompatible with multi-party lines.
Illinois State University terminated its last party line in 1990.
One of the last manual telephone exchanges with party lines in Australia was closed down in 1986 in the township of Collarenebri, where most town residents had a telephone number of only three digits, and to make a call outside the exchange area it was necessary to call the exchange to place a call.
The exchange rang a distinct ring down the Gundabluie 1 line, signalling the party's corresponding letter in Morse code.
This distinctive ring would alert all parties on the line who the call was for.
For rural residents, many were on a single telephone line identified by a number and a property name, for example one party line was called Gundabluie 1 line.