Starting this week, some customers will receive letters about changes to their monthly access charges and the discontinuation of old discount offers, which have now been superceded by better bundle offers.
Changes to monthly access charges
From 1 October 2013, customers on our HomeLine® Complete, Plus, Advanced and Together Plans will receive increases of $2 per month on their monthly access charge. HomeLine® Part will increase by $1 per month. There will be no change for customers on our bundled plans.
For business services, there will be a $2 increase on the monthly access charges on a number of our BusinessLine® Plans, and changes to the price of the ISDN monthly access charges and some ISDN features.
BusinessLine® Part will increase by $1 per month. There will be no change for customers on our bundled plans or contracts.
Importantly, there will be no change for customers on our bundled plans or contracts, no increase to the price of any phone calls, and no change to HomeLine® Budget or the Telstra Pensioner Discount scheme.
Simplification of customer discount offers
With the introduction of new and improved bundles, we will also exit some of our older bundle discount offers – called Telstra Reward Options – which date back to 2004.
The newer bundle packages provide bigger data allowances, family calls benefits, or a mobile broadband allowance – to suit a range of customer needs. These older bundles will cease from 1 November 2013.
We understand that there is never a good time to make changes to our prices and we don’t make these decisions lightly. We spend hundreds of millions of dollars each year operating and maintaining our phone services so our pricing needs to reflect this ongoing investment, as well as the rising cost of our own business inputs such as labour, petrol and materials.
Importantly, we will continue to maintain value for our customers in the overall offers we provide to fixed line customers.
It’s worth noting that in the five years to December 2012, CPI inflation increased by 14.5% while telco prices increased by just 3.3%.
Switching plans is easy
All affected customers on these older bundles will receive advice in writing and we’re keen to talk to them about their options and find the most appropriate package that suits their current needs. Even if customers aren’t affected by these changes, they can call us on 13 22 00 or review all the plans at telstra.com.au/bundles
For more information on these changes visit Telstra.com.au/recent-changes
Tribe to be shutdown
On 10 September 2013 we will also be exiting our social media aggregator services Tribe. This product was introduced more than three years ago when the majority of our customers did not have smartphones.
Now, more than two-thirds of our customers use smartphones and we have seen a decline in usage of more than 60% in the Tribe service over that time. Customers today also have larger data inclusions in their plans so prefer to access the sites directly and these social media sites have significant new features including video, which Tribe does not support.
These changes mean post-paid customers may need to upgrade their data inclusion on their plans while pre-paid customers can purchase a data pack from $5 as usage will be metered.
We’ve also been working hard to help customers stay in control of their mobile spend and data charges. Some initiatives include:
- Introducing Telstra 24×7 apps for Android and Apple devices that give customers better visibility and control of their mobile spend direct from their handset – including showing at a glance how much data a customer’s used compared with their allowance.
- Providing free SMS usage alerts that notify customers on our popular Freedom Connect and Every Day Connect mobile plans of their voice, SMS and MMS usage against their mobile plan allowance.
- Reducing excess data charges on our in market consumer mobile plans