I knew it. No doubt they are made by the same company as the elevator summoning buttons.
“Many crosswalk signal buttons actually don’t do anything when you press them. They are only there to give you something to press, called “placebo buttons”.
There are an estimated 90% pedestrian crossing buttons that do nothing in New York City alone. Which is the case in most major cities in the United States. If the people were allowed to manually override set traffic timers it would severely disrupt traffic. Modern computerized systems are used to help maximize throughput in intersections, including factoring in pedestrian crossings automatically.
In some cases, certain buttons actually do something specific times of the day, while other times they are ignored by the traffic system, generally during peak traffic times.”
Via : Today I Found Out