[LINK] Bush tests Telstra over Next G
link at todd.inoz.com
Tue Jan 8 08:56:27 EST 2008
At 09:00 PM 7/01/2008, David Boxall wrote:
>This strikes close to home: I live in a rural (though not very
>remote) area and own an LG 550. The 550 was pushed quite heavily in
>rural areas in the early months of NextG. I've found that,
>sometimes - in places where CDMA worked fine, voice quality is
>useless though the display indicates a usable signal.
David, in traveling all over the place the last few months, I've
found that NextG has it's moments. Although we can retain a perm
online Broadband Internet connection nearly EVERYWHERE we go (a few
45 sec black sports in the Mitchell Highway and a few long ones on
the Bruxner) we oten have ZERO voice call capability at all.
It's a very weird feeling being trapped at the bottom of a gully with
flood waters all around you, being able to broadband you way around
the world sitting on the bonnet of a 4WD, but not being able to call
anyone cause yuo can't get a voice service.
>If there's now a phone available that meets Telstra's promise, then
>anyone who was sold one that doesn't (like the 550) should be
>offered an exchange.
> From <http://www.smh.com.au/text/articles/2008/01/06/1199554485304.html>
>. . .
>ON HIS property near Walgett, Angus Church used to get decent
>reception from his hand-held CDMA phone.
>But Telstra is determined to switch off the CDMA network on January
>28 and to replace it with Next G. For Mr Church, the transition has
>not been happy.
>The LG 550 phone Telstra sold the farmer when he switched to Next G
>works only when plugged into a cumbersome and expensive car kit with
>large vehicle-mounted antenna. And as soon as he steps away from his
>truck, it's useless.
>"Unless you have got a car kit you don't get anything with Next G,"
>Mr Church said. "They say it's the same, if not better [than CDMA].
>That's a complete lie."
I guess I can't comment on Farmers use on properties. I guess there
will be black spots where no one lives and there is no known
But one experience on the Bruxner Highway was interesting.
We pulled into a tiny town of about 40 people. Asked about mobile
coverage - they said there is none unless you have CDMA. SO they are
about to really suffer.
However, 10 km's up the road, take a left onto a fire trail and drive
for 1 km and you have Next G in the middle of nowhere at full strength.
Driving around mapping signal strength for a bit of fun (and 4WD
time!) was interesting.
Google Earth showed me that there was NO ONE residential or business
in the area, in fact most of the coverage was pure bushland
uninhabited and near impossible to get to even with a 4WD.
>Telstra advertised that the Next G network was "everywhere you need
>it", but in the bush - where farmers rely on mobiles for safety and
>commerce - a host of customers say nothing could be further from the truth.
Maybe the Bush needs to go back to FREE communications - UHF and HF 2
way radio. I just fail to see how milliwatt mobiles are useful as a
safety tool in places as large as some of these rural
properties. They'd need their own CELL tower to even start to provide a cover.
>At Peak Hill, the farmer and bushfire brigade group captain Peter
>Cannon switched to Next G and got an LG 550. He was out in the
>paddock recently when there was a haystack fire and could not be
>reached on his mobile, as he previously could with CDMA.
>"If we can't make phone calls, how is Telstra going to make any
>money?" Mr Cannon said. "[Next G] is just not equivalent to CDMA."
Hehehe, I like that opening line!
But Telstra makes it money from handset service packs, the phone
calls are just a cash flow.
>Near Wentworth, Ian Murdoch believes the G in Next G stands for
>"generally doesn't work". The farmer was also sold an LG 550 because
>"that was supposedly the best one for here".
TO be honest, every mobile phone sellers I've spoken to honestly said
avoid the LG mobiles. Telstra shops seem to push them because they
have a huge buy/sell margin for the retailer, but any of the
independent phone ships seem to really steer you away form the LG phones.
Maybe this is a Telstra Quasi-Monopoly deal with LG to push a product
in massive volumes of manufacture. Wouldn't surprise me if Telstra
did a "LG you make 250,000 of these at a good price cause we've got
250,000 people about to loose their service" kinda deal.
>Despite flat terrain and being close to Mildura and several phone
>towers, Mr Murdoch said his mobile coverage had fallen from 90 per
>cent with CDMA to less than 50 per cent with Next G.
Ahhh, the antenna sig strength doesn't define the quality of service
with 3G networks. Only "no signal" will define the service.
I've had 1Mbps connections to the Intenet on 1 Bar signal, and yet in
places where I have full signal only get around 300 kbps.
>Telstra says Next G covers 25 per cent more area and boasts 75 per
>cent more transmission sites. It started Next G in October 2006 and
>encouraged country people on CDMA to swap. In July it introduced the
>"blue tick" system that identified phones suitable for marginal
>reception areas, such as the LG 550. But in August, the farm
>research body Kondinin Group said its testing showed that it was
>only with the addition of an external antenna that the Next G
>handsets then available could match the reception of CDMA handsets.
>It was only in November that Telstra introduced the top-line Country
>Phone, the first Next G mobile to boast the same small pull-out
>antenna some CDMA phones have to greatly improve reception in marginal areas.
I've got these stick on antennas that you stick to the phone. They
are passive of course, but they make a dramatic difference to
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