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The very brief popularity of this telephone greeting stemmed from the fact the “ahoy-hoy” was Alexander Graham Bell’s preferred way to answer the phone. Ahoy-hoy derives from the term “ahoy”, which is generally associated with being a nautical term used for hailing ships. However, there is also significant evidence that it was popularly used as a way to more or less say “hello” in non-nautical situations. Further, “hoy” was commonly used as far back as the 14th century as a call to use while driving cattle. This precedes the first known instance of it being used in the nautical sense, attached with a leading ‘a’ sound (“a-hoy”).
Want the text version?: http://www.todayifoundout.com/index.php/2011/10/saying-ahoy-hoy-was-at-one-time-the-preferred-way-to-answer-the-phone/