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Vodafone's Massive Overhaul: More Honest Plans, Better Phone Repayments

16 Aug 2017
VodafoneNews

Vodafone is making big, big changes to the way it operates. Two-year lock-in contracts for mobile plans are a thing of the past, and you'll no longer be locked in to ongoing handset repayments either: you can buy a new phone outright, or pay it off over 12, 24 or 36 months.

The new Vodafone plans separate voice/text/data from mobile handset repayments, making it clearer what customers are paying and what they're paying it for. If you buy a handset from Vodafone, you can get it outright on a SIM-only month-to-month plan or discounted 12 month plan, or pay it off monthly over 12, 24 or 36 months alongside one of the telco's new Red plans.

The new plans range from $30 to $100, with anything from 3GB to a massive 50GB of data. All include unlimited national calls and text messages, but there are also Global plans with international call minutes and a Qantas Frequent Flyer points bonus on sign-up. If you sign up for 12 months, you'll get double data.

To continue reading the article: click here. (gizmodo.com.au)

Fixed 5G wireless to become fibre competitor by 2025

16 Aug 2017
InTheNews

By 2025, 1.4 billion 5G connections will see fixed wireless technology becoming a fibre competitor, according to Juniper Research.

The firm is predicting that from 1 million 5G connections in 2019, which is now being billed as “the anticipated first year of commercial launch”, will grow to 1.4 billion connections in 2025, an “average annual growth of 232%".

Juniper’s new research, dubbed “5G Market Strategies: Consumer & Enterprise Opportunities & Forecasts 2017-2025” is on sale to relevant parties at relevant prices, and notes that for 5G to be successful, “5G fixed wireless broadband would need to meet expectations in real-world scenarios to compete with fibre broadband".

Naturally, Juniper also has a free whitepaper to tempt you into purchasing its full report, entitled: “5G: How Operators Can Maximise ROI.”

The report’s key findings include the info that the top three 5G countries with the highest number of 5G connections by 2025 will be China, the US and Japan, accounting for 55% of all 5G connections by 2025.

To continue reading the article: click here. (itwire.com)

Melbourne Cup: Racing authorities campaign for right to access mobile phone metadata

16 Aug 2017
InTheNews

Punters make up to "600 bets a second" on Melbourne Cup day, but authorities charged with upholding the integrity of racing cannot view the phone records of anyone suspected of engaging in suspicious activity.

Until 2015, stewards and integrity officials in four states had the power to request phone records, but changes by the Federal Government, made as part of the metadata laws, stripped them of the tool.

Before the changes more than 80 groups had access, now it is just 21 key law enforcement agencies.

Authorities have been campaigning to get the powers back to ensure the integrity of racing is upheld.

Victorian racing integrity commissioner Sal Perna has made several requests to Attorney-General George Brandis' department to restore the powers, and he has the backing of the Andrews Government to do so.

With the Spring Racing Carnival just months away there is a renewed push for the powers to be reinstated.

To continue reading the article: click here. (abc.net.au)

Telcos willing to pay more for 5G: Gartner

14 Aug 2017
InTheNews

The telecommunications industry is prepared to pay more for 5G mobile capabilities than they are willing to pay for 4G, according to a newly published global survey.

According to the survey by analyst firm Gartner, 75% of end-user organisations would be willing to pay more for 5G mobile capabilities, while just 24% would be unwilling to pay more for 5G than for 4G.

"Those in the telecom industry are more likely to be prepared to pay more than those in other industries," said Sylvain Fabre, research director at Gartner.

"End-user organisations in the manufacturing, services and government sectors, for example, are less likely to be willing to pay a premium for 5G than telecom companies, which are willing to pay a 5G premium for their internal use."

Fabre says that in addition to offering better prices for industries in which users are less convinced of the business benefits of 5G, communications service providers (CSPs) must create value propositions that entice customers to start 5G migration projects sooner.

To continue reading the article: click here. (itwire.com)

The Best Smartphone Plans With Lots Of Data

14 Aug 2017
InTheNews

Do you remember when Optus used to include unmetered social media data in plans? Back in the good old days when most of Facebook was text-based and videos were unheard of.

These days, social media is one of the major data killers on our phones, not just because of the prevalence of videos, but also to the way that social media platforms prioritise the visibility of video. We recently ran a few tests and found that an hour of regular Facebook browsing uses about 80MB, an hour of watching videos on Facebook uses (a pretty reasonable) 160MB, and that an hour in Instagram burns through a huge 720MB.

Which is a long way of saying what you already know: you need data. Lots of it.

Happily, the telcos are listening and data inclusions are moving upwards in big chunks. Below are the plans with the biggest data inclusions you can buy right now.

To continue reading the article: click here. (gizmodo.com.au)

Clarke Creek experience highlights value of mobile phones for remote schools

11 Aug 2017
InTheNews

The central role that schools play in small isolated communities should see them a lay down misere when expansions of regional Australia’s mobile coverage footprint are planned.

That was the view of delegates to the federal Isolated Children’s Parents’ Association conference in Alice Springs, who voted to continue the lobby to relevant federal ministers to ensure that rural and remote schools are prioritised when any mobile coverage extension is contemplated.

The issue was brought up by the Balranald branch in New South Wales, which argued that most rural and remote schools were evacuation points in the event of emergencies in the area.

“Clare Public School is 155km from Balranald and consists of a school only,” the motion’s explanation read. “In the event of a bushfire, the school is the emergency evacuation point.”

Its prominent position makes it the custodian of the community Royal Flying Doctor Service medical chest and a defibrillator.

To continue reading the article: click here. (katherinetimes.com.au)

Development application lodged for mobile phone pole at Lake Tinaroo, large ‘public benefit’ for region

11 Aug 2017
TelstraNews

Lake Tinaroo campers could have better mobile phone coverage soon.

A development application for a 40-metre-high Telstra telephone pole will be tabled at the Tablelands Regional Council’s planning committee meeting on Thursday.

The proposed development is recommended, despite issues with the pole’s closeness to residential areas and visual impact for surrounding areas.

The report said the impacts are outweighed by the “overall public benefit”.

“This officer assessment has identified some inconsistencies with the relevant provisions of the

applicable planning instruments, and localised impacts on visual amenity,” the report said.

To continue reading the article: click here. (cairnspost.com.au)

Mobile blackspots: SA Government's 'disappointing' phone towers bid criticised by Opposition

09 Aug 2017
InTheNews

The South Australian Opposition has lashed out at the State Government, accusing it of not bidding for enough phone towers for remote parts of the state.

The Government revealed in budget estimates that it had applied for 22 new phone towers in the second round of the Federal Government's Mobile Black Spot Program. It was approved for 20.

Under the program there were 266 new or upgraded mobile base stations up for grabs.

"It is really disappointing that the government only submitted 22 priority sites under the program," Opposition spokesman David Ridgway said.

Funding for the program is shared by the Federal Government, state governments and the major telco companies.

Mr Ridgway said he believed the reason South Australia did not get more towers was because it only contributed $1.5 million to round two, which overall was worth $213 million.

"There is a direct correlation, they only put in $1.5 million," Mr Ridgway said.

To continue reading the article: click here. (abc.net.au)

Program to fixing mobile blackspots in outback NT

09 Aug 2017
TelstraNews

Residents of Manyallaluk have received mobile phone and fixed broadband services thanks to a three-year, $30 million co-investment program between the NT Government and Telstra.

Manyallaluk is about 100 km north-east of Katherine and is home to about 100 people.

Both the NT Government and Telstra have each committed$5 million per year over three years to the program that will build at least eight new mobile base stations in remote communities within the Territory.

The community of Barunga has also benefitted from the program and now has a fixed broadband service, further to its previous constructed mobile service, which will help provide new economic opportunities for locals. 

Member for Arnhem Selena Uibo said the agreement with Telstra has been integral to the government’s pursuit of reliable telecommunications infrastructure in remote communities. 

To continue reading the article: click here. (katherinetimes.com.au)

Nash hits back over mobile black spot claims

09 Aug 2017
InTheNews

NSW Minister for Regional Communications Fiona Nash has hit back hard at claims made by Opposition spokesman for regional services Stephen Jones about the government’s mobile phone black spot program priority location list.

Mr Jones called the program a “political plaything,” said the government had abandoned need as a method of ranking black spots, and pointed out that three times as many government priority locations were in in Coalition electorates.

Tumut is number 27 on the government’s list.

Mr Jones added: “following on from the myriad of flaws in the design and administration of this program identified by the ANAO (Australian National Audit Office) last year, it seems that the Minister has put it in the “too hard” basket.”

Ms Nash begs to differ.

“It is the Coalition which is delivering a tower to Tumut and Labor who has never delivered, nor even promised, a tower,” Ms Nash said.

To continue reading the article: click here. (tatimes.com.au)

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