Telstra helps One.Tel customers out of contracts

Telstra helps One.Tel customers out of contracts

Summary: One.Tel mobile phone customers have been thrown a lifeline by industry heavyweight Telstra following the sinking of One.Tel's local operations and threats by Optus to cut services.

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TOPICS: Telcos
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SYDNEY (ZDNet Australia)--One.Tel mobile phone customers have been thrown a lifeline by industry heavyweight Telstra following the sinking of One.Tel's local operations and threats by Optus to cut services.

The new mobile phone package from Telstra MobileNet will allow One.Tel clients to transfer services without incurring the embattled telco's Early Termination Charge (ETC).

Under the offer, One.Tel clients must take up either the BYO Saver or GOLD BYO packages from Telstra within two weeks.

"One.Tel customers who take up this optional arrangement will not incur charges associated with the early termination of their One.Tel contracts when migrating to Telstra," Ferrier Hodgson partner and joint administrator Steve Sherman said.

Telstra has also committed to pay a commission to One.Tel for every customer who chooses to migrate their service to Telstra MobileNet.

Optus has faced heavy criticism since it withdrew its network coverage to One.Tel's 250,000 mobile customers.

Optus, Australia's second largest telco, advised One.Tel customers last week that mobile services were no longer being provided by One.Tel and that it was providing them as an interim measure only.

Customers were then given a week to decide whether or not to remain connected and continue to use their existing mobile numbers under the Optus brand.

The Optus move was branded a "corporate raid" by One.Tel's administrator and prompted advise from the Australian Communications Authority (ACA) and the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) that customers not act "impulsively".

The ACCC and ACA forewarned customers that they may incur early termination fees if they transferred services without considering their options carefully.

Telstra OnAir Group MD, David Thodey, said the rescue package was a good outcome "under the circumstances" for One.Tel customers.

"Since One.Tel went into voluntary administration, Telstra has been committed to working constructively with the administrator to deliver solutions which are in the best interests of One.Tel's customers and employees," Thodey said.

"This deal not only provides certainty to One.Tel customers, but is commercially sensible as it recognises customers have pre-existing handsets.

Details of the BYO Saver and GOLD BYO are also available from the following sites: Saver and Gold

Ferrier Hodgson will be presenting its preliminary review of One.Tel's financial standing at tomorrow's Initial Creditors Meeting.

Topic: Telcos

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