A fax is a machine or device used to receive and transmit printed papers (images, text, or both), through the telephone system. It is also named telecopier.
The machine has to be connected to the telephone line and there is a phone number associated with it. So, when someone sends you a fax, it has to send the documents to the corresponding number.
The first version of the modern fax that was commercialized was introduced in 1964 by Xerox Corporation and it was called (LDX) or Long Distance Xerography.
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