Specialising in the human experience of Living with prostate cancer – warts and all

NextG ripoff must end

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Senator Conroy’s decision to stop Telstra turning off the CDMA network is the first time the federal government has stood up to Telstra … but they need to be even stronger.

The nextG coverage in the North East hill country is appalling and the week handset explanation of Telstra is a week excuse. Their response was a marketing exercise of six handsets with a ‘blue tick’ designed for rural use.

We have replaced an early model CDMA unit with an LG handset (with a blue tick) only to find it will not hold a signal in our Whitfield home and will not even find a signal at my workplace over Hansonville way. In trying to get a remedy, Telstra sent the LG unit back to the manufacturer for an upgrade and provided a loan phone (ZTE with a blue tick) that was equally inneficient. Four weeks later, the LGE was returned with a software upgrade that decreased the performance. By now, we were getting annoyed.

Then came the complaint marathon. I was stuck on the phone to Telstra for two and a half hours. I spoke with five people with Indian accents interspersed with three Australian accents. All they were interested was the location – which they could not find on their maps or online. They could not accept that the handset was not up to the task because it had a ‘blue tick’. Their advice was to register a complaint and start again. Now I was p*ssed off and let them know it was time I spoke to my member of parliament, the media and my solicitor to bring a charge of breach of contract.

I was duly transferred to a supervisor who was so helpful and promised to replace the LG phone with a superior one within ten working days. On day 10, we went to the Wangaratta Telstra shop where they replaced the LG phone with a Motorola ‘blue tick’ handset so they could send the LG back to the manufacturer for an upgrade (haven’t we been there before?)

The Motorola handset was worse than the LG and the ZTE loan unit. It had no signal strength at all and promptly ran the battery down searching for a signal. Back to the telehone complaints department and we are now on a two day promise of a replacement with another ‘blue tick’ handset. I will keep you informed.

We must pressure the government to make Telstra maintain the CDMA network until each of us gets equal – or better – reception than we have had in the past. Telstra should also be forced into re-connecting the CDMA service to those customers who have already converted to the lesser NextG performance.

On the other hand, we could push for the GSM system. Whilst they say it cannot be done, they had no problem installing a temporary tower in Whitfield last year to service the Great Victorian Bikeride and the 2006 bushfies

Written by Greg Naylor

20 January 2008 at 7:17 am

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  1. Telstra corporate support supplied the info that Samsung A701 handsets are the best for our part of the woods and they are right. I have used the LG, Motorola and ZTE (Telstra brand) with poor results but the Samsung one works very well in King Valley apart from Moyhu.

    Carolyn Foote

    27 January 2008 at 11:49 am

  2. NextG is a ripoff, not to mention Telstra’s internet plans in general. The idea that they *still* sell a sub-gigabyte plan and actually charge the same as what other ISPs charge for 10gb or more, is just laughable. And their excuse that they need to “cover costs” is a farce.

    I am disgusted and ashamed of what Australia has done with its telecommunications. Privatising the infrastructure was arguably the single worst act against our economy.


    8 December 2009 at 11:51 pm

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