The ISP Q&A Series: Telstra

The ISP Q&A Series: Telstra

The ISP Q&A Series is a look at the opportunities Australian ISPs have for resellers. It also profiles their views on some of the more contentious issues affecting the industry. In the fourth part of this ARN series, a Telstra spokesperson provided answers on how the telco giant views the market, ISP-level Internet filtering and the NBN.

You can also view the responses from:

1. What is your company's background? Telstra is Australia’s largest fully integrated telecommunications provider. Telstra connects millions of Australians to each other every day, through superior technology and superior service. Telstra is the proud owner of Australia’s fastest and largest national wireless broadband network, covering 99 per cent of the Australian population – the Next G network. Our Next G network is a further demonstration of Telstra’s transformation in enabling the delivery of world-leading and world-class products and services to our customers. Telstra’s vision is to do for customers what no one else has done: Create a world of one click, one touch, one button, any screen, real-time solutions that are simple, easy and valued by individuals, enterprise and government and business customers. Telstra offers a full range of services and competes in telecommunications markets throughout Australia, providing more than 9.1 million Australian fixed line and 9.7 million mobile services, including 5.2 million 3G services.

2. Please explain the opportunities you have for resellers. Telstra Wholesale sells access to Telstra’s networks into the wholesale market across a product portfolio spanning data, mobiles, fixed voice, facilities access and international services. We sell about 80 products and a complete list is available at our website. We sell a range of data product including ADSL and ADSL2+ covering 84 per cent of the Australian population, which is greater than any other wholesale provider in the market. And MEF (Metro Ethernet Forum) accredited Carrier Grade and Business Grade Ethernet. Having access to a wide range of products allows ISPs to provide a full range of products to their end users – but still focus on their core competencies. At Telstra Wholesale we focus on the things we do better than other providers in the Australian telecommunications market: Our service capability; the expertise of our people; the reliability and coverage of our network.

3. What additional opportunities do you see for resellers who want to use your products? We have sophisticated online systems that enable our customers to manage their requirements – for example we process approximately 9.4 million service qualifications online every year and our 24-hour self-service capability allows some 3 million orders to be submitted online annually. Telstra Wholesale is a low cost channel, with service automation rates of 80 per cent, this helps TW customers to operate efficiently. We enable customers in Australia and elsewhere to deliver their own products and services off the Telstra network. We understand that a customer's reputation is its most valuable asset and we are constantly working to maintain and improve our high standards of supply and service.

4. What are some of the challenges they should be aware of? ISPs need to manage their cash flow in the current environment. Through our online systems we provide opportunities for customers to better manage variable costs. LinxOnline BillView is Telstra Wholesale’s user-friendly, secure, web-based application to view, print and manage bills online.

5. What is your prediction for the ISP market in the next 12 months – do you forecast any big changes? We expect to see continued growth in the fixed and wireless broadband market and expansion into the social media, online content and entertainment space.

6. What is your stance on ISP content filtering? Telstra is evaluating technologies to block a defined limited list of URL’s on our network. We are sharing the results of that work with the Government to assist it in its policy deliberations. Telstra views the blocking of a defined and finite list of sites on the ACMA blacklist as one of several steps that can be taken to make the online experience safer for the Australian community. It is not a silver bullet and would need to be complemented by other measuring including user education, parental supervision of children using the internet and appropriate resourcing of law enforcement agencies.

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