22 Mar 2011
By Andrew Volard

MessageBank® Plus – a new way to dial up voicemail on Apple iPhone


From today, customers with a compatible Apple® iPhone™ on a Telstra mobile plan can access a new and convenient way to manage their voicemail. It’s called MessageBank Plus and it allows you to quickly access the voice messages that matter to you most.

Here’s how it works. By linking up with the iPhone’s voicemail interface, MessageBank plus serves up all of your voice messages (in date order) as a list on your phone.  To play back a message, you can simply browse through your list of voicemail and tap on the item you’d like to hear. There’s even a handy ‘Call Back’ button so you can return calls with a single touch.

MessageBank® PlusIt’s a real-time saver as you can select the voicemail that’s important to you without having to call 101 MessageBank or play through all of your messages.

We know many of you have been asking for this feature for some time, so we’re really pleased that we’ve been able to design, test and now offer this to customers.

MessageBank Plus requires an Apple iPhone running iOS4.3 or later, connected to a Telstra Post-Paid mobile voice service.

The service is charged at $5 per month and includes the delivery of voice messages to your iPhone within Australia which you can then playback at your leisure. Normal charges apply for calls made using the Call Back function and for call diversion to MessageBank and retrieval from MessageBank by calling +61101. International data roaming charges apply for delivery of messages to your iPhone using MessageBank Plus while overseas.

We hope it makes managing voicemail that little bit easier.

How to set up and use MessageBank Plus

  1. Contact Telstra to have MessageBank Plus activated on your mobile service
  2. Touch the Phone icon on your home screen and select Voicemail.
  3. To record your personal greeting (that the caller will hear), select Greeting and record your message and then touch Save. If you have an existing personal greeting, you don’t need to re-record your greeting.
  4. Touch the message you want to listen to from the list of voicemails:
  • A blue dot indicates a new message.
  • Use the Play/Pause button or drag the progress slider to control the playback.
  • Press Delete to remove the message from both your iPhone and MessageBank.
  • Press Call Back to return the call with a single touch (standard call charges apply).


Posts: 45


  1. RachelA. says:

    MessageBank Plus is already included under Everyday Connect Plans starting from the $80 plan. Not only that, if you signed up before 31st Of October for an $80 and up everyday connect plan you’ll get an extra 1GB for free for 12 months.

  2. Matt says:

    What is the android equivalent? Using a S3 Galaxy.

  3. brent says:

    ive change from apple to samsung i really like the message bank plus is this feature coming on the samsung phones ??????

  4. Bob Macdonald says:

    Dose MessageBank plus work over wifi with no 3g or mobile conection?

    • Leigh Price (Blog Editor) says:

      Hi Bob. I believe you’ll need a cellular (mobile) connection to our network to initially receive the MessageBank Plus (visual voicemail) messages, but they’re then stored locally on your iPhone. Our customer service team can assist further if you have queries. :)

  5. Dave says:

    Still not free? I have committed to Telstra for my home phone, mobile and Internet, he least they could do is take the $5 from m cap.

  6. Anjalee says:

    Is message back plus charged to your phone plan or its additional on top of your plan.?

  7. brent says:

    anyone know if on samsungs yet ?????

  8. Milton says:

    I’m paying 130 a month and I still have to pay $5…?
    Ripping us off telstra.

  9. jack says:

    highway robbery for something built into the iPhone that should just be free – guess someone has to pay for the committee at Telstra sitting around trying to work out ways of surrupticiously extracting easy money from unsuspecting customers. I object to the default setting, especially when I asked for it to be switched off months ago and having trouble getting them to do that.

  10. Sean Wilson says:

    $5 like everyone before me has said is a bit rich for something that the iPhone already has the ability to do and other carriers around the world already offer for free. Telstra this should be free.

  11. Rhys Lloyd says:

    It’s been nearly two years, and Telstra you’re still not listening to your customers! My contract expires this year, I will definitely be reviewing what’s available…

  12. Ashley L says:

    I’m told that Voda provide this service free!

    • meagan says:

      yes voda does supply it for free. i just changed to telstra and im really pissed off that this isnt offered for free!!!

  13. Barry says:

    We took out an $84 plan last week and it states that, unlimited messageBank retrieval.
    Can someone advise whether this means only free retrieval of messages or does it mean free setup and retrieval of messages and we don’t have to pay an extra $5 per month

  14. Dave says:

    Come on Telstra, reward your loyal customers by providing this service free or as part of our cap! Not a difficult decision and everyone wins..

    • Nick says:

      >Come on Telstra, reward your loyal customers by providing this service free or as part of our cap! Not a difficult decision and everyone wins..

      It is free on higher level caps, as is normal voicemail.

      It is not free on the lower end caps, neither is normal voicemail.

      If telstra made voicemail plus free to all iphone users regardless of the plan they are on then this would be unfair to non iphone users who would still need to pay for voicemail access.

      Just because it is built into the phone does not mean it needs to be free.
      The messages still need to get into your phone which uses the network so there is a cost involved for telstra
      Plus telstra likely needs to pay Apple for each user using the service.

    • Rhys L says:

      “Plus telstra likely needs to pay Apple for each user using the service.”

      I don’t think they do. And the cost involved is minimal, as it uses data, of which it’s already sending to your device.

      The difference between normal Voicemail and the Visual Voicemail is that the normal Voicemail on the cheaper plans are charged for the time you use them. It’s not a fixed price like the VVM.

      But this isn’t even the issue. Telstra’s competitors offer the same service on all their plans without the extra charge. Telstra is simply using it to try and get their customers to step up to a higher plan which they probably don’t need.

  15. Tim C says:

    It is a bit sad when I pay $134 a month for my iPhone and Plan and then have to pay an extra $5 for a feature that would be nice to have but not worth it for the amount of voicemails I get. What is sad is that I have a pre-Paid T-Mobile number it the USA and one with O2 in the UK and it is even free with both of them.

  16. Dave says:

    Just moved over from vodafone on a $130 business plan on a galaxy s4. Extremely disappointed to find out days later that Visual Voice Mail is not available on the Samsung Galaxy S4.
    When you get 30 voice messages a day, the telstra message bank system is impossible to use.
    Can anyone advise if there is a way to get around this.
    I would not have signed up with telstra and or purchased a Samung Galaxy S4 if I had of known Visual Voice Mail was not available. Now stuck in 24 month contract.
    I would have presumed all Smart Phones in this day and age would have Visual Voice Mail Available.

    • Abhi Beckert says:

      Guys, samsung doesn’t come with software to connect to visual voicemail, so telstra can’tenable it.

      The only “official” solution for android is Google Voice and that is only available to people with a home address in the USA (even though it works worldwide).

      Dave, if you get that many voicemails a day you should just buy an iPhone. Keep your samsung if you like android better, and use the iPhone for making calls. At 30 messages a day the convenience of visual voicemail easilly outweighs the cost of having to buy two smartphones.

    • Jimmy says:

      Dave, if you’re a business man, I question how good a business you operate or contribute to for not having looked into these issues prior to signing up to something.

      Hang on, forget I said anything, wanna buy some frozen water?

  17. Dave says:

    Thanks Telstra for all of your help. Or complete lack of.
    Pathetic customer service from what is supposed to be the best telecommunications company in Australia.
    There are plenty of after market visual voice mail apps for android. Just that none of them work in Australia. Just shows if Telstra really wanted to provide the best service they could.
    I have had to work around this by diverting my phone to a separate non telstra service which emails me my voice mails in wav format. Works just like visual voice mail.
    Telstra could implement services if they really wanted to provide the best service, they just dont because they have a monopoly on the Australian market and dont really care about their customers.

  18. Phil says:

    Not sure what the problem is…works fine and is free on my plan. Called Telstra and it was enabled quickly.

    • Dave says:

      What sort of phone do you have? It does not work with the Samsung S4.

    • Nick says:

      Dave it is an apple only feature!
      It is not something that telstra is only offering on the iphone, it is actually built into the iphone from apple.

      If you even read the first sentence of the blog
      >From today, customers with a compatible Apple® iPhone™ on a Telstra mobile plan can access a new and convenient way to manage their voicemail. It’s called MessageBank Plus

  19. Mike says:

    I am surprised that Visual Voicemail hasn’t launched yet for Prepaid Telstra services either.

    Given that the technology is in place on Telstra’s voicemail platform, this is incredibly disappointing.

    I would even be happy to pay for this service out of my prepaid dollars, if need be.

    Really hope Telstra will finally offer this service across all their plans very soon!

  20. Andrew says:

    Still nothing for prepaid 2+ years on, and still $5/month on the cheaper postpaid plans… it’s a rip-off.

    Now that Vodafone have sorted out their network, after last year’s fiasco, I’m headed back to them where it’s free on all plans & prepaid.

    • Phil says:

      see you later Andrew have fun with no data speed and poor connectivity. Im sure it only takes one year to repair a network….

  21. Trent says:

    Just changed from vodafone to telstra today…already regretting coming back. Cost me around $7 just to set up voicemail and plus charging at least $1 to retrieve messages. Vodafone had FREE visual voicemail on even their lowest plans (i was on $30/month).

  22. Nick says:

    Today I got this text message
    ;Throughout today an enhancement to your voicemail is being made that will provide more convenience, for more info what does this mean?

  23. Sam says:

    How do you set the number of rings/length of time before it diverts? By default does it divert on busy, no answer and unreachable?

    And finally, is it really as easy as described in the instructions above to activate and use?

  24. Max says:

    3 years down the track – how about finally enabling this for other (non-Apple) platforms like Windows Phone 8? The OS supports it fine.

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