Telstra opens hotline for "genuine" complaints

Telstra opens hotline for "genuine" complaints

Summary: Telstra has opened a dedicated hotline for customers experiencing technical difficulties with the move from CDMA to Next G, following a decree by the Communications Minister.

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Telstra has opened a dedicated hotline for customers experiencing technical difficulties with the move from CDMA to Next G, following a decree by the Communications Minister.

The hotline was established after the office of the Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy found that although Telstra had fulfilled its basic commitments to customers in providing equal or better network coverage on Next G as it had with CDMA, there are still extra measures it can implement to help customers with the transition.

Senator Stephen Conroy

According to the department's findings, some customers have purchased Next G handsets that do not provide adequate service for the network, despite the fact that its overall coverage has been deemed acceptable.

"The hotline would give the small number of customers experiencing genuine problems a direct line to a specialist call centre where trained consultants would take them through diagnostic steps to help locate the cause of their issue, and where necessary arrange a physical test of coverage at their location," Telstra Country Wide group managing director Geoff Booth said in statement.

He added that if these steps prove there is a genuine problem with the handset, Telstra will be willing to issue customers with a new device for free.

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

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40 comments
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  • NextG coverage

    I purchased a new pre-paid 3G unit two weeks ago and had the Telstra shop specialist confirm my coverage.

    The result - I have coverage one day but not the next. And because of the poor coverage when it is available the battery life is almost halved between recharges!

    How about publishing this new special phone number?

    Graham
    Bungundarra, Qld
    anonymous
  • Fictitious,...hummmm!

    I presume you were referring to Sydney and all the other Tel$tra employees?
    Huntsman.ks
  • NextG Coverage

    Thanks.

    Graham

    P.S. Their online coverage map does not work from my PC so one cannot use their online problem reporting service!
    anonymous
  • Tel$tra & help! An oxymoron!

    It's a pity Tel$tra's senior management suffer from tunnel vision.

    They could have scored brownie points if they had provided advice and the phone number to report problems without the Minister and media goading them to do it.
    The real problem is of course the fact that GSM is not as good as CDMA. Tel$tra can waffle all it wants to plump up it's mediocre GSM system, but the fact remains it's never going to be as robust or provide the coverage of CDMA.
    It was a short sighted exercise to grab customers from the other carriers who hadn't implemented GSM and who didn't have their own transmission facilities and depended on Tel$tra wholesale CDMA.

    SHAME!
    Huntsman.ks
  • No Keith

    Probably talking about people like you who scour the internet looking for new ways to bag Telstra
    anonymous
  • Once again Keith

    Are yo utalking about companies who don't have their won transmission or companies who will not invest beyont the profitable 600,000 square km's and ignore the 2-3% of the population who live in the 94% of the land mass.

    Come on Keith you know as well as anyone that those other so called carriers could invest and bild the infrastructure, we are not talking about copper here, we are talking about radio spectrum that carriers already have licences for.

    So why don't you tell everyone who you work for Keith ... and who you use to work for ... and why you no longer work for them ...
    anonymous
  • Keith Styles, your talking crap...

    Whats This GSM dribble ur talking about... NextG is available on every tower GSM and CDMA. There has always been a website and team behind NextG blackspots... man and you wrote that crap for everyone to see???
    anonymous
  • Don't you just love ANONYMOUS

    I don't hide behind it, like you faceless lot who are unable to tell the truth.

    If Tel$tra published the information for ALL to see AND responded to the problems so many have reported, you wouldn't have the mess everyone has to put up with in the suburban areas of Capitol cities and in the urban & country areas which depend on good communications. GSM isn't providing it...yet!
    It would also help if we didn't have to pay the bloated cost of their woeful service every time we use it.

    I don't own a bank! like Tel$tra which is able to waste so much of it's share holders money on legal nonsense, time & effort bashing the government, instead of providing cost effective mobile and broadband services.

    If there is a team behind NextG blackspots, why is it taking so long to provide a CDMA comparable coverage?

    Why were Tel$tra shops still selling CDMA handsets when they knew it was going to be shut down?

    If the Government hadn't stepped in & prevented Tel$tra from prematurely closing the CDMA network, do you think Tel$tra would have ever provided any relief for all the users affected by it's arrogant behaviour. Not on your nelly!

    You guys are a joke.
    Huntsman.ks
  • Forgive me ANONYMOUS

    Could you please use a spell checker and grammar checker next time you post.

    There are so many companies spending money arguing in court battles and waiting for Tel$tra to provide a competitive, cost effective wholesale service, it beggars description.
    I can't quote numbers, but I'll make a good guess that the number of Australian employees working for all the ISP's VSP's and Telco's trying to compete on a not too level playing field, may outnumber Tel$tra's employees, if not now, in the not too distant future, as Tel$tra continues to reduce it's head count and make major purchases and place contracts overseas. All of which adds to our overseas debt!

    I had the misfortune to have to call BigPond Support and could barely understand the foreign voice on the end of the phone & I'll wager he wasn't even living in Australia??? Off shore support maybe???

    It doesn't say much for all your bogus claims that Tel$tra is an Australian company!
    Huntsman.ks
  • Upgrade your battery

    A 3GPP WDMA mobile phone will create more radio emission energy in a geographic area that has low or marginal coverage. This is necessary so that it can participate in the signal coding algorithms (Orthogonal Codes also known as device data streams, and PN Codes also known as device/base station channel streams). If a 3GPP WCDMA phone in a geographic area that has low or marginal coverage cannot present itself to the base station receiver with the correct frequency strength then it will interfere with signal coding algorithms and the phone by its 3GPP design will not participate in the WCDMA network resulting in a no network coverage message for the user.

    The ability for 3GPP WCDMA phones (and associated base stations) to present themselves with steady fixed signal strength levels at the receiver end is crucial for a WCDMA network to function without degrading the network.

    Therefore country users in geographic areas that have low or marginal WCDMA coverage will find that their phones will consume more battery power and that their phones will display a no network coverage message much earlier before the battery actually goes flat. This problem can be alleviated by upgrading to the latest battery technology (a fancy way of saying upgrade your phone) which is what Telstra is encouraging people in these areas to do.

    My view is that Telstra should be giving these phones away for free and that users in these marginal areas should always keep their phone batteries fully charged as practicable and at least have another means of operating at full power e.g. car kit.

    Yes, it is currently a worse situation for these users than the old CDMA, but technological advances in phone technology will make NextG desirable for them in the future. Perhaps Telstra can help them out here if they cannot be bothered installing base stations in these areas to alleviate this problem.

    (Note: I have never been a Telstra employee and I don't own Telstra shares, so Sol how about a job offer for explaining this?).
    anonymous
  • Speaking of Jokes

    Keith,

    You are a professional poster and even if you didn't show your name many people would know it was you because of your writing style, obvious bigotry and alignment with an organisation that competes with Telstra.

    You will place a comment that has nothing to do with the story at hand as long as it is negative towards Telstra.

    Let's look at this story:

    Wholesale services - Next G has nothing to do with wholesale services, in fact the ACCC explicitly excluded the network from being declared when Vodaphone tried to gain access because they didn't want to build their own network originally.

    Staff numbers - an efficient company will hire less employees then a company that is not efficient, Telstra is being smart and getting rid of the excess unproductive staff (bit like you when you left Telecom).

    Overseas call centres - Telstra has publicly stated they will never send customer facing roles overseas, blame the government for allowing people into the country that happen to have an accent. Once again showing your racism and bigotry.

    High cost of GSM - You have a choice of other companies to use and do not have to pay for using a Telstra service but then again is their service so bad or lacks coverage that you would prefer to use a company you hate then one of the freely available alternatives.

    Telstra wasting shareholder money - this is a private company and they are free to spend the money in any way the board allows, if we don't like it vote the board out. As a shareholder I like what they are doing. We are in a competitive world, when there is competition and market forces determine the price. Although there is some competition for GSM (as Optus and Vodaphone would want you to believe) but there is no real competition to the Next G coverage, if one day the others catch up then the price may drop accordingly.

    Selling CDMA handsets - as soon as Telstra believed the Next G was more then ready to replace CDMA they stopped selling devices and stopped allowing new connections, this was at the start of last year. The way you worded this comment would make an uninformed reader believe they are still selling CDMA handsets.

    Keeping money in Australia - would you rather support a company woned by the Singapore government (Optus/Singtel) or UK based (Vodaphone) or from NZ (AAPT/Telecom NZ). this is the single biggest comment that proves you are a hypocrite.

    And finally spell check - I can't any idiot would actually put Tel$tra as a real word in their spell checker.
    anonymous
  • Hi Ho it's to lying we will go.

    Keith, Hi, Hello and G'Day but your reference to me demonstrates a Tel$tra Hater's ability to post a fictitious story. LOL.
    anonymous
  • Many thanks Stephen.

    Stephen Pappas. Thank God for people like you who can so eloquently and honestly express, via the written word, the true facts of a situation.

    Keith, you have been exposed, humiliated and shown to be lacking in all aspects of your argument by Stephen, and I would expect that, should you be a sensible person, you will learn from the knowledge presented by Stephen and act accordingly.
    anonymous
  • Not just NextG

    Yesterday on Australia Day, I purchased a prepaid GSM card for my daughter use on public transport.
    I thought using the "Australian" phone provider Telstra there would now be a problem, however the "Australian" provider is unable to finalise the registration until at least Tuesday due to system upgrades/maintenance.
    Imagine how much more of a mess if Telstra was shutting down CDMA at the same time!!
    What a Joke ...
    anonymous
  • Provide more facts

    you make a claim that you bought a prepaid card on Australia Day, who would be open on this day? I doubt it would be a Telstra run store, most likely a small retailer. You mention a GSM prepaid, what has this got to do with the CDMA migration? and finally if you were to plan an outage the best time would be on a public holiday when most of the country has closed down and are celebrating the day.
    anonymous
  • Its funny..

    In my local Westfield all the shops were open, including Telstra...

    So they would be open..
    anonymous
  • Eat from the Telstra hand.

    NextG monies would definitely have been better spent on servicing the needs of all its users rather than wasted by Ericsson on artificially propping up a company called IBAP to whom the biggest benefactor is themselves and not the users of NextG.

    IBAP is composed of ex Ericsson cast-offs who's anti-competitive contractual engagements with Ericsson have seen them all eat lavishly out of the same NextG plate.

    Wouldn't the money have been better spent on propping up the NextG service rather making these bums rich.
    anonymous
  • Ask you the same question

    Wouldn't the $968,000,000 in taxpayer money have been better spent on providing non-duplicated network services to rural Australia rather then giving it to a company that never existed a week earlier, is half owned by the majority shareholer (Singapore government) and half owned by a tiny company who wouldn't know what do do with $1,000,000 let alone 968 times that.

    In case you don't know who I mean it's called OPtus / ELders = Opel.

    The only winners in that deal are the fat cats in those two companies.

    Place that much money in a bank account at 6% and you earn $160,000 per day, over 6 months $29,000,000 which should be enough to have created their own web site or at least had one media release since August.
    anonymous
  • What the?

    This does not answer ACCCs (anon would have been better!) question and is not even related? I am always interested to see gouging exposed (corruption) and the interests of consumers protected (as opposed shareholders).
    I dont care that Optus is owned by Singtel either. Optus, Telstra, Voda, TNZ - theyre all just multi-nationals who answer only to their shareholders. If they think of customers at all, it is only about how much they can increase charges and how much support can be cut.
    I support ACCC, ZDNet and the like because they are the thin line protecting consumers from shareholder interests.
    The battle between pro/anti Telstra is futile. The battle should be about customer service levels and do we get value from our suppliers?
    I tend to be critical of Telstra because they have treated me badly on several occaisions in the past, lied to me, obstructed my access to adsl for years, stuffed up my billing repeatedly and had me on hold for hours on end. I have not been treated like this by other suppliers (as yet) but if they do, I will vent my frustration at them too!
    anonymous
  • The consumer should be the winner

    Sometimes I cannot quite understand people's unwavering honour towards some big corporation that would readily squash him like an ant if it were beneficial for them to do so. In the big-end of town loyalty is often associated with money not people, and big money is often associated with scams.

    Perhaps these people are patriotic soles and are doing it for Australia. If this were the case they should be congratulated, but they should be patriotic in the Australian way which is to cut some of these fat tall poppies down. A lot of these high flyers own foreign cars, holiday overseas, dress in foreign labels and generally think Australians are as dumb as their marsupials. Would Syd be as patriotic if he saw first hand some of the dodgy empire building practices that occur in the telecommunications industry?

    There are some people in Telstra who cannot think beyond themselves unless they cop a cricket bat to the back of the head, and sometimes it takes a second swing, and even then this newly found consciousness is only temporary.

    A working phone network is a handy thing to have. Things like excuses, explanations, conditions, limitations, upgrades, cover-ups, etc are a sign of bad workmanship. In an era where telecommunication systems are relatively cheap, proven and easy to set up then this is no way to treat your customer. The days of only Telstra being able to build it have dissolved, and along with it are the need for expensive practices and expensive people.

    There is no honour in paying considerably more and getting little extra for it.

    I am very weary of any corporation that produces lots of hot air (marketing and legal) and lately Telstra has been billowing masses of this stuff into our faces. This was the ace card up Telstra sleeve unfortunately it stunk when they pulled it out.

    Telstra does need to be congratulated for evolving into something new with NextG but its implementation has exposed some of the internal machinations of Telstra to be dubious and of wrongful intent. For this reason alone Telstra needs to be watched, prodded, and hit with a cricket bat every now and then so that its actions do correlate with its public intentions.

    For most of us our noble cause is doing it for Australia, not for Telstra or any other telecommunications company that wants to rip us off. And that's the way it should be.
    anonymous