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05 Feb 2013
By John Chambers
Feb
05
2013

Maximising the Customer Experience – Trialling New Ways of Managing Our Network

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As has been widely discussed online today, Telstra will shortly be undertaking a limited trial of a range of technical solutions for better managing network performance.

The trial will be limited to a small number of ADSL customers in Victoria. All affected customers in the trial areas will be informed of the trial in advance and be given a choice of whether to participate in the trial.

Telstra will consider the results of this trial as part of its future network planning and product development activities. No decisions have been made to extend any of the network management practices being tested in this trial to our broader customer base.

The objective of this trial is to identify options and pricing plans for our customers that will improve overall customer experience, to ensure that we continue to offer the best quality service at the best possible price. Network management practices of this kind are common internationally and are already in use by a number of Australian ISPs (particularly on wireless networks).

One of the variety of options being examined under this trial is the shaping of specific services (including some peer to peer (P2P) services) in certain circumstances, to determine what impact this has on total overall customer experience of time critical experiences for real time entertainment.

Online piracy is an important policy issue and Telstra remains open to discussions with a range of stakeholders to identify workable solutions that protect the interests and privacy of our customers. However, this trial is solely about examining ways of improving our network management to ensure that all of our customers enjoy the best quality service for their specific needs at the best possible price.

As part of this project, Telstra is trialling network enhancements that allow the identification of specific types of traffic on our network. The technology being used looks at characteristics of the data packet to identify the type of the traffic present. Any inspection that takes place is used only to identify the signature of the traffic; it does not identify the content (eg whether this is a movie, the title or any other details).

This trial does not involve any monitoring or tracking of the sites visited by our customers, and the trial’s findings, including customer feedback, will be collected in accordance with our Privacy Statement.

Telstra will always ensure that we give our customers all the information they need to choose the products and services with the characteristics that best meet their needs.

Update 8 Feb

Since we posted this blog discussing our plans to trial new ways of managing our network, there’s been a lot of discussion online and in the media about the potential implications of these plans. Given this, we thought we’d respond to the most common questions that have been raised since our last post in these trials. Please read our Myth Buster blog post here.

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Posts: 11

64 Comments

  1. Phil says:

    It seems to have started without warning in NSW now as well without anyone being informed or warned. I haven’t been able to log on to my (wireless) account all day, only came back online at 6pm.. lousy service from an overpriced ISP.

  2. Peter says:

    Has anyone else noticed excessively high usage according to the Usage meter, since participating? I turned broadband OFF and went to 3G fro 4 days to prevent running out of my allowance. I have a complaint in and was to have heard from Telstra Tech Support by now. Silence.

    • Noel says:

      Hello Peter, this happened to me with a 1Gb data pack with my mobile phone. Telstra techs had no idea on how I should prevent this except for an expensive increase to 5Gb data pack which was rather too expensive for me.. or turn off my data use. I sat down and nutted through how I could use my 1Gb data so quick. I realised that every time I took a photo, video (large data use), these pictures and video’s where going immediately to my cloud account when I was out at a party, wedding or just anywhere for example. No wonder I was going over my data package every month. The cost for going over can be very expensive.. in my case $206.00. Well, I had to work out how I could use my data pack without risking exceeding it. Go into your settings and change your data so that it ONLY transmits your pictures and video’s when you are ON WIFI. This is the ONLY WAY to protect yourself. I did inform Telstra techs about this and they were not aware at that time that the new “Cloud” accounts were responsible for exceeding data monthly usage.

  3. Noel says:

    I am an ancient Telstra user since 1972. After reading ALL of the comments in this forum, I too have to say that I am sincerely disappointed in the shadey way Telstra is attempting to use, although hollow, fancy marketing words to explain their current throttling of P2P traffic. They may say to you that you may be breaching their “Fair Use” agreement. But if they sell you 500Gb as in my case, and 80% of my traffic is P2P, then if they throttle me down to a snail’s pace.. they are surely breaching the “Denial of Service” act put in place to safe guard us from this very practice by Telstra. I suggest more people report them for “Denial of Service” to prevent them from treating you so shabbily in the guise of “best practise”. Maybe I could keep my plan and only pay Telstra for what I receive.. which would be 20% of $150.00 .. a big saving here but a good reason to leave. Did you know that Bangladesh has faster speeds than Australia.. look it up. The local water authorities are reducing the pressure in suburban and country water pipes so that the 100 year old rusty pipes will last until they have received a pat on the back and retired so that some one else gets blamed for not future proofing as Telstra has with their infrastructure. Recently the Liberal/National party (Australian Government) has said that they can deliver a service equal to the best Internet speeds in the World, with infrastructure they have planned, that can carry only a tenth of the traffic that the countries who can deliver the fastest Internet speeds. Telstra and this “Trial” is solely intended to aggravate P2P uses into moving off their network.. and they will dog you with excuses, poor speeds until you do. And they will make a huge profit with the 20% of loyal “none P2P uses” to then tell the none technical public how fast they can travel down a copper pipe without falling off. It appears they will devolve rather than evolve. To get away with this throttling of P2P traffic, Telstra will have to change the wording of their contracts or risk breaching a “Denial of Service” to it’s customers.

  4. Very exciting short article

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