The loss of telephones destroyed in World War II led to a serious shortage of telephones, which is alleviated in part by the introduction of simplified storefront public telephones. One such item is the simplified phone' and another is the 'consignment phone.' Both types normally use the common No. 4 automatic desktop phone set, but beginning in October 1953 the consignment public phone is changed to a conspicuous red color. This is the start of the well-known public 'red phone' of Japan's street scene.