An end to my requests for better wireless plans from Bigpond/Telstra

Posted on Friday, November 12th, 2010 at 2:58 pm

End of discussion about wireless quotasFor those that have followed my quest for better value and better quota plans for wireless broadband users of Bigpond (Telstra) you will know I have been quite persistent with my quest.  Today however I must end this quest, not solely for the fact that I am getting nowhere but also that the stress and frustrations with it all is not helping my continued and increasing ill health.

Earlier today I received a phone call  from Telstra in relation to my many emails, blog comment posts on Telstra Exchange and everywhere else.  The discussion fairly much went to the fact that there is not going to be any change so I might as well shut up, here is a summary of how the discussion went, of which I have sent as an email to the Telstra CEO David Thodey as well.

David

I wish to first thank you for arranging to have your General Manager for Wireless marketing/planning call me earlier today.

The discussion as you would imagine was one of additional frustration as it was very evident from the outset that there was not going to be anything done to assist families struggling to manage their quota available month by month to meet the needs of the families internet usage which includes our children’s educational activities.

As I have indicated to you previously we are an average family, we have 3 children of the ages 9, 11 and 15, all of which utilise the Internet for their educational requirements and of course their own amusement purposes. We restrict their computer use during week days to educational use only.  This use will include going to sites like National Geographic and the ABC and the many other sites of interest to them plus what they are studying at school. However what many of these sites also have is video, but due to our quota limits each month the watching of video online is now allowed.

While speaking with your General Manager I asked a number of questions in relation to why wireless quota is being limited, of which I got the reply that at this stage all you can offer is 12Gb’s as that is what is commercially viable.  I further illustrated my frustration with the situation where we see ADSL having been provided new prices far less plus massive increases in quota, as well as bundle options. There was no explanation from the General Manager why that was possible, I mean did the cost of providing ADSL really drop that much?

I referred to the price per Gb for the two broadband options, especially where wireless users are being charged more than 17 times per GB than what ADSL users are, of which your General Manager replied that she could not go into the details of their costs, which I understand and simply asked for a more generalised answer but was refused it.  So I can only assume that the cost to actually provide wireless is not actually 17 times that of ADSL.

The usual we cannot compare ADSL to wireless as they are two different technologies was an argument made by your General Manager, which I accepted and have always done, however I advised that is fine and we are not asking for a parity set of plans, just some additional quota to meet the internet demand a family needs.

We continued to discuss the issue and I was trying to get information to assist me to understand the reasons why the limit is in place.  However it was simply a case of at this stage there is no additional quota plans available but they will look into that in any future plan upgrades.  Which is fine but what do we do until then and how long wil that be, months, years?  No answer was provided to that obviously.

I made a case for a fixed wireless vs mobile wireless service which was refused.  I then tried to make a point that while Telstra is providing a premium and good service that service is being used mostly by those that have wireless as a secondary connection, as in those that have ADSL as well.  Due to that reason families like us are restricted in our Internet use of which is our only and single Primary connection, which is why I made a case for a possible set of ‘Home Broadband’ plans for those wireless users unable to get a fixed line service.  This was refused with a response basically being that they provide the mobile service to the whole, which basically means tough luck.

I suggested as a compromise and a way forward for the top wireless plan to have an increased shaping speed like that of the top ADSL plan, which would at least make the internet more usable, however this was immediately met with at this stage it is not something Telstra can offer and it wil be something that will be considered in future changes.  I asked how long that might be but again was met with the it is part of our future that will be looked at if things change, meaning that was not known and could be any time in the future, even years.  I made a comment about the when the NBN comes along but that was ignored.

Your General Manager also raised the issue in relation to the number of emails I have sent and the repeated blog post comments I have made on Telstra Exchange that are not being published.  I asked why they are not being published and was told that she felt my issues have been dealt with.  I asked does that mean my posts will not be published, I did not get a reply of a yes or no, just that they felt the issues have been dealt with.  How can my issue be dealt with if I feel it is not?  On pressing the issue further saying ‘do I take that as a no’ (that they will not be published) I got a very cold reception that did not answer the question with again a reference that it was dealt with in her view.  Again how can it be dealt with if I feel it has not been dealt with?  I still feel that I am being unfairly treated on the non-publishing of my posts but it would seem no matter what I do I am going to get nowhere with Telstra on this matter.

I followed up then that I will have to keep up my requests as I don’t have any other options, I mean what else can I do other than ask Telstra for more quota.  Needless to say this is when your General Manager ended the call.

I would like to end by saying that I do not think my requests are too unreasonable.  I have not asked for anything massive, I have not asked for parity with ADSL, I have not shouted, abused or been rude (in my opinion, though if I have please let me know) in any of my communications with you or any of your staff both in writing and on the telephone and I have also provided alternative suggestions.  All I ask is to be treated with the same respect, professionalism, courtesy and thoughtful way in which I try and communicate with you, and this includes publishing my posts on TEX.

Yours Sincerley

Needless to say I am greatly disappointed once again and can now only look forward to the NBN rollout as I think that will be the only next change on the horizon.

So anyway this will be last post on the matter as I have pretty much been told to stop writing in comments on the TEX blog and to simply shut up about it all.

I don’t see this as a defeat and nor do I see it as a win for those that have been happy to try and shoot me down at every corner, it is merely that I have had enough and after the chat today on the phone with Telstra it was very evident that I count for very little and so do my requests, even if they do understand my frustrations with it all, they are not willing to do anything about it for the foreseeable future.

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3 Responses to “An end to my requests for better wireless plans from Bigpond/Telstra”

  1. Mark Ereira Says:

    I am saddened and totally disgusted with Telstras arrogant disregard for family wireless usage, going from 10GB to another 2 GB now 12 gb is obsene especially when compared with 200 GB for the same money 20/25 gb was asked for and that in itself was miserly by comparison, you really do just pay lip service, you know that your responses did not reach out to go any where near reaching a fair go, 20/25GB for the same price as your 50GB $49.95 and 200GB was begging for a few crumbs from the Telco that I used to respect, please do not ask me to participate in feedbacks etc,and I will tell you that as soon as my contract is finished I will not go near Telstra again, your general staff I have a great deal of respect for but as for you decision making management you will lose loyal customers, we still ask you the same question you fail to answer WHY WHY WHY !!!

  2. Greg Says:

    Thanks Mark for your support and as you know I have also been very frustrated with Telstra/Bigpond over the last eight or so months. However with the whole saga continuing to further affect my ongoing health issues I have had to let go and leave it be, in the end it is no longer worth the extra grief being caused by the lack of understanding by Telstra Management. What I am more annoyed with is that they would not even consider an increased shaping speed for the top wireless plans.

    I still retain a little hope that there will be some changes not too far away, or at least when the NBN does finally arrive, though from our little town and looking at the map of coverage we will still be on wireless once it is done, I just hope the speed and quota is better.

    Again thanks for your support.

  3. Garvs Says:

    as per my whirlpool post to you in July 2010

    Telstra in reality considers people like you and me insignificant numbers on a sheet… (no matter if they try and insinuate otherwise as per their response’s to you)… as the saying goes we are just a drop in the ocean!

    until sign ups & existing customers drop significantly in mass due to some reason such as new competition etc they wont do a damn thing, and if they do feel generous it will be in drips and drabs like they have been doing with wireless…

    I realised this a long time ago… that it was not worth all the time and effort to complain too much on a consistent basis… its best to complain every now and again and put your point across doing it. Doing it all the time only works if many others also do the same… and reality is 99% of people will not follow up a complaint with another… they will just do it 1 time and be satisfied stating their view.

    Telstra is a business and they are in it to make as much money as possible creating the largest margins that they can whilst not making people move to some other “alternate service” (its a balancing act that they work out very strategically), they are not there to produce an equal service between different broadband mediums… they price their products to suit their own needs and not ours thus we just have to suck it up and if/when another competitors service arrives… decide if you are unhappy to move to the competitors network without any hesitation as they truly don’t value you as an individual customer (unless your a massive business with massive contract)! Until that time we all just have to put up with what they offer as annoying as it is.

    the absolute most I can see occurring is 15gb for $109.95 and $139.95 for 20gb… that’s the reality as no other carrier offers anything in this range (with a country wide network reaching over a similar distance) due to the competition only servicing mainly the city areas (which are the most profitable).

    it also does not help when the competition only market their broadband as a complementary service to fixed line service (due to their own problems such as congestion, lower coverage and lack of sufficient spending on their networks etc)… They don’t market their wireless broadband as a replacement to fixed line and here lies the problem for us less fortunate souls who can only access wireless broadband as our primary internet service

    until competition is more widespread into the regional areas (read nbn) Telstra will charge as they do because there is no incentive to offer any more GB’s for less $$$… once the competition comes in and gets around 60% complete in regional areas I could see Telstra offering some special deal where you sign up for 3-5 year contract and you get a much better deal… hence locking you in etc… that’s the way it all works

    no incentive = no lower prices and no bigger GB plans 🙁

    we just have to wait and hope for a better deal that may or may not eventuate…

    Cheers
    Greg

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