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Franklin and Transact / Telstra

By The Axe Man 26 November 2009 20

Can anyone tell me if it’s possible to get a Telstra phone line hooked up to a residence in Franklin stage 2?

I know that Tranact are providing Fibre to the home but I don’t want to be connected to Transact.

The reason I would like just a standard phone line is because I want to use VOIP and if I have to go through Transact it’s impossible not to get a phone through them.  Plus I find their charges too high for my liking

Their cheapest plan is $60 a month, for a phone which I don’t want, and for a broadband connection to which I must then go and get an ISP who will charge me more (eg iiNet cheapest is $14.95 a month for 2.5gb with excess usage charges rather than speed throttling).  And I still don’t have VOIP

If I can get a standard phone line the cheapest I can get VOIP and internet with through iiNet is $40 month (4gb limit and no excess usage charges)

So does anyone know if it is possible?

What’s Your opinion?


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Franklin and Transact / Telstra
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Palifox 11:16 pm 29 Dec 09

A higher gain antenna will not use more power. But you could place an outside antenna low at the rear of the house where it will be invisible from the street. Not the best techical solution but it may be adequate.

The legality of external antenna bans is dubious, I’m not sure they have been tested in courts but where local councils have tried to ban amateur radio antennas they have had a big fight on their hands with the amateur supported by the national radio amateur group, the Wireless Institute of Australia. The antenna is part of the receiver and no legislation exists that says you can’t have any receiver you like. They tried that in the 1920s and it didn’t work, people just built their own sets.

I’d be interested to hear of Telstra’s reaction to this. I’d also be interested to hear of Transact’s reaction to you telling them that unless they supply the required service and nothing more, you will do without.

Mordd 7:42 pm 27 Nov 09

Quote: “What is to stop you setting up antennae inside your roof space (unless your roof is flat)?”

Nothing, except for the same reasons why you put in on top of your roof or outside somewhere else in the first place, that the signal loss caused by going through your roof/walls in the first place partially negates this. Sure this can be overcome by simply getting a more powerful antenna, but thats more expensive and, uses more power and partly negates the point of having a more powerful antenna in the first place.

I also wonder what will happen to this estate regarding the NBN, will TransACT be handing over its current FTTH network to the government for a stake in the NBN is the question, in which case would that make this issue redundant at some point if TransACT did that, thats all presumptive on thhat occuring though of course.

wishuwell 4:02 pm 27 Nov 09

We have a wireless Optus home line that does the job plus it is fully transportable. Took it with us to the coast last weekend, just plugged it in and made calls.

Grrrr 3:28 pm 27 Nov 09

Cotts said :

Slavich told iTnews that …

The new housing estates are also bound by a “covenant” that prohibits households from erecting antennas to gain access to free to air TV, reflecting that TransACT has provided connectivity to such services over the fibre. Slavich said antennas are an unsightly alternative.

1) Does this covenant actually exist in any legal sense? There are plenty of people in Franklin who’ve ignored it and put up antennas on their roof. Inside the roof would also work fine, with most people having line-of-sight to Black Mountain about 6km away.

2) Has Mr Slavich driven around the area? The houses are ugly with or without antennas.

But Slavich insisted that the company offers an “open access” model when it comes to both voice and data.

“The voice, IPTV and RF is today provided by TransACT, but the customer can pick whichever ISP they wish,” he said, pointing out that over ten ISPs – including iiNet and Grapevine (50 percent owned by TransACT) are able to provide services over the fibre.

“open access” meaning any ISP can join, but on TransACT’s terms. Which appear to be less than reasonable or otherwise Internode would be a TransACT ISP by now. iiNet’s TransACT prices are ridiculous too, which is strange for an ISP that is very competitive with it’s other offerings.

What really gets my goat is TransACT’s apparent attitude that we’re all too stupid to see just how average their offering is:

– People a few KM away are getting the same line speeds on ADSL as the slower TransACT FTTH plans, from better ISPs for less money.

– Their pay-TV offering is SD only, their STBs only have S-Video out, and the content is nothing to shout about.

– Who cares about landlines anymore? Free calls to the other TransACT phones is it’s only claim to fame .. which is virtually useless.

– 24 Month contracts for little or no benefit? If you want people to remain customers, how about making your offering better than the next guy’s?

switch 2:55 pm 27 Nov 09

Grail said :

Why do you want to listen to FM radio?

The only radio station worth listening to in Canberra is 666, which you can stream over the Internet 🙂 Windows only though, which is a bit surprising since I would have thought they’d want civilised people listening to their program.

Some stations are still not streaming (eg Artsound) and besides, listening to radio via the internet can quickly use up your quota if your ISP doesn’t provide the streams as free content.

Btw, although I went over to the Dark Side years ago, I’d be very surprised if there wasn’t some way to play 666’s stream on a Mac. VLC player comes to mind…

So radio amateurs should avoid these suburbs, then? Or is it just TV receive antennas that are banned?

The Axe Man 2:22 pm 27 Nov 09

It seems rather stupid to me. Doesn’t it make a mockery of Free to Air tv if I need to pay Transact to provide it?

All I want is a broadband connection from Transact so I can connect to the internet and use VOIP. I can’t get that because they don’t offer just that, I need to bundle it with a phone.

Surely if Telstra are able to provide a phone line to someone who then decides what to do with that line why can’t Transact?

Also in the contract I signed when commiting to build in Franklin I’m pretty sure it didn’t mention that I would be locked into Transct and not able to get another provider either for phone, internet or Pay TV

What if I was a pensioner who only needed a phone connection? Would I be locked into Transact’s cheapest phone plan ($60 a month I think coupled with a broadband connection) when I can get Telstra’s plan at about $20 a month

I have emailed Telstra who replied that
“As with all new estates, the contractors building the houses will generally do the pre-wiring and trenching needed, this is know as lead in work.

It is up to the owner of the property to contact Telstra to arrange to have a telephone line service connected.”

I have sent them a copy of the link mentioned earlier (thanks for that) and will await their reply

Grail 1:38 pm 27 Nov 09

Why do you want to listen to FM radio?

The only radio station worth listening to in Canberra is 666, which you can stream over the Internet 🙂 Windows only though, which is a bit surprising since I would have thought they’d want civilised people listening to their program.

la mente torbida 1:33 pm 27 Nov 09

What is to stop you setting up antennae inside your roof space (unless your roof is flat)?

switch 11:17 am 27 Nov 09

Cotts said :

The new housing estates are also bound by a “covenant” that prohibits households from erecting antennas to gain access to free to air TV, reflecting that TransACT has provided connectivity to such services over the fibre. Slavich said antennas are an unsightly alternative.

What happens if you want to put up an antenna to get FM radio?

Grail 10:38 am 27 Nov 09

If you don’t like the idea of TransACT having a monopoly on services in the new suburbs, write to your local member.

It’s really not that hard, folks.

As a monopoly provider, TransACT should be giving you the choice of whether you want (a) a phone line and/or (b) broadband connection. In my opinion the ideal situation would be where you can contact an ISP such as Velocity or iiNet who will then arrange the connection for you and bill you for both the broadband and the Internet connection. That’s the way it’ll work in the National Broadband Network anyway. Do you get separate bills for the power lines connected to your house versus the electricity you use? do you get separate bills for the water mains and sewage connected to your house versus the water you use and sewage that you produce?

Then again, these issues of service availability are what folks should be aware of before they buy a property in Gungahlin in the first place.

Gungahlin Al 10:37 am 27 Nov 09

georgesgenitals said :

The new part of Gungers is an expensive ghetto. Why anyone would live there is beyond me.

Off topic, but there is Gungahlin the town centre, and Gungahlin the district. I assume you are talking about “townhouse ville” next to the town centre, which the LDA prefers to call “Metros”?

If so, isn’t it good that we managed to convince the gov’t to rezone another almost 40ha of it away from more townhouses to Commercial Zone instead? that’s a massive increase in potential local employment. Locals will see an insight into this when our latest Gungahlin Smokesignals newsletter gets distributed next week.

georgesgenitals 9:41 pm 26 Nov 09

The new part of Gungers is an expensive ghetto. Why anyone would live there is beyond me.

bd84 9:33 pm 26 Nov 09

I believe that TransACT is the only option in the newest stages of the greenfield suburbs in Gungahlin.

damien haas 9:31 pm 26 Nov 09

i have been waiting since 0ct 3 to have a transact business line installed.

Mordd 7:42 pm 26 Nov 09

Thanks cotts, I was going to quote from that same article on ITnews, thats where I first saw info on this as well. I’m going to have to quote from the comments on the article though, no-one has put it better than poster “D3wizl” on the ITnews site imho:

TransACT: “I mean c’mon guy? Suure we have a Monopoly, but look at this sign, does this sign say Telstra? Noo this sign says TransACT. We’re all about Open Access” (spoken like Sadam (sic) in South Park)

Consumer: “Son of a…”

basketcase 6:25 pm 26 Nov 09

Why not ring Telstra and ask them?

Gungahlin Al 5:02 pm 26 Nov 09

It’s possible to get a phone line. Broadband is another thing though. You may be able to snag an ADSL1 connection, but a 1500Kb service will be lucky to give you 500-700Kb most times.

Forget 20Mb. They say you can get an 8Mb service (for the same price as the 20Mb one!) but I’m still waiting…

Go fibre given you’ve got the choice.

Cotts 4:51 pm 26 Nov 09

No you cant, those new suburbs are an exclusive TransAct shop and everyone else is locked out. You cannot even get any antennas for Foxtel etc..

I believe you can get other ISP’s running over TransACT although im not sure if that will enable a VoIP service to work.

If you want more information check out this article:

http://www.itnews.com.au/News/161250,transact-unveils-100-mbps-fibre-exchange.aspx

It states:

Slavich told iTnews that TransACT has signed exclusive deals with “multiple developers” to provide fibre connectivity to these Greenfield estates.

“There is no Telstra copper, just us,” he said.

The new housing estates are also bound by a “covenant” that prohibits households from erecting antennas to gain access to free to air TV, reflecting that TransACT has provided connectivity to such services over the fibre. Slavich said antennas are an unsightly alternative.

TransACT thus has an effective monopoly on both fixed-line telephony and free-to-air television services in the estates.

But Slavich insisted that the company offers an “open access” model when it comes to both voice and data.

“The voice, IPTV and RF is today provided by TransACT, but the customer can pick whichever ISP they wish,” he said, pointing out that over ten ISPs – including iiNet and Grapevine (50 percent owned by TransACT) are able to provide services over the fibre.

roccon 4:32 pm 26 Nov 09

Generally it is a monopoly in favour of Transact. The phone service is not open access, but you are free to choose from one of the ISPs that are with Transact.

caf 4:27 pm 26 Nov 09

Telstra have a legislated “universal service obligation”, which means they have to provide everyone in Australia with a Standard Telephone Service.

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