Next G will not affect deaf users: Telstra

Next G will not affect deaf users: Telstra

Summary: Telstra has denied that its decision to close down its CDMA network will affect the deaf and hard of hearing communities.


Telstra has denied that its decision to close down its CDMA network will affect the deaf and hard of hearing communities.

The CDMA network is scheduled to be switched off in January, by which time the telco says its Next G network will provide equal or better coverage. According to Telstra, there are now more subscribers on its 3G networks than CDMA -- around two million users in total.

Senator Natasha Stott Despoja raised a question in parliament this week on the impact of the CDMA switch-off on the deaf community.

"Has anyone considered the impact that the closure of the CDMA network, the transfer to digital, has had not just on regional Australia and others but on the deaf and the hearing impaired?" she said.

Concerns have been raised over how cochlear implants will function with the switch from CDMA to Next G and whether users will experience interference from the new network.

A Telstra spokesperson told ZDNet Australia today that there are expected to be no problems with the transition and the telco has examined the possible impact on interference. "Next G is a form of CDMA and so it will share the same attributes."

The spokesperson added that some deaf users prefer Next G and its video calling functionality as it allows them to use sign language over the mobile network.

Topics: Telcos, Government, Government AU, Mobility, Telstra

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  • Next G

    Lot of comment on if it will work but have you seen the prices?
    A phone on a $20 plan costs you nearly a $1 a minute. Don't get much cheaper as the plans go up. Forget the coverage, at Telstras prices nobody can afford to call anybody else anyway.
  • CDMA _is_ digital

    Why do so many people think CDMA isn't digital? Has everyone forgotten that in 1999 the old analog network was switched off and replaced with a _digital_ network, CDMA?

    I've even read an article from AAP, blindly reproduced by a number of Australian newspapers, that pretended CDMA wasn't a digital network and then contradicted themselves in the very same article by quoting someone referring to it as a digital network.

    And why is Stott Despoja wasting question time with a frivolous question that could've been answered with 5 minutes of research?

    *end rant*
  • Next G a rip off!

    Your so right. Almost as soon as I bought my handset from a Telstra shop and discovered billing I'd not expected, I devalidated all WAP and Internet capabilities. I don't even use it for Mobile calling.

    The $20 plan is exorbitant highway robbery.

    My Next G phone now does no more than my previous and much less expensive Nokia 1530 which had none of the bells and expensive whistles of my ZTE Next G handset.

    I don't even SMS using it. I have a service provided Via VoIP from Pennytel which does everything I need of a mobile phone for so much less (cents) when ever I need to send an SMS or call a mobile user.

    Once again, Tel$tra is ripping off the public like so many things this so called Australian company now does.
  • Deaf and Next G

    My partner is Deaf and has a Cochlear Implant, she has no problems using the a NextG Mobile and has commented how great the sound quality is compared to all other mobile phones she has used!
  • A Next G handset *may* affect Cochlear Implants

    Next G handsets primarily use a WCDMA signal which generally doesn't effect deaf users. However, if the handset cannot find a WCDMA network it may instead use a GSM network. GSM signals transmitted by handsets often effect deaf users. But most handsets do indicate via display icons which system, WCDMA (often called 3G) or GSM (often called 2G), is currently in use. User beware .....