Telstra Probably Just Cost Me $1000

In May this year we bought our eldest daughter a Nokia N97 phone at the local Telstra store, to replace her well-worn Hiptop Slide. The Nokia cost $36 a month to pay off the handset over 2 years, along with the monthly phone plan.

The Nokia proved a dog of a phone, slow, unreliable, prone to crashes. We went back to the Telstra store a couple of times to ask them to check the phone, and were always told "there's nothing wrong", until after a couple of months they then informed us the problem was the SIM card. The salesperson back in May had simply moved the SIM from the Hiptop to the Nokia. The Hiptop was a 2G device, the Nokia a 3G. Apparently they should have burnt a new SIM. So we dutifully trooped back in and had a new SIM burnt, that we were assured would solved all our problems.

Of course, nothing really improved. Finally I caved in and this week bought a new iPhone4 to replace the Nokia. I've had my iPhone4 for several weeks and been extremely happy, and our daughter was also comfortable that it would be a viable replacement.

We also had noticed that her phone bills were getting expensive so today I rang Telstra and asked to move up a plan level on the phone.

Amazingly, the Telstra guy on the phone this morning told me that there were still old 2G phone codes on the account, left over from the Hiptop, and thus 3G service would never have worked properly.

So it's entirely conceivable, and the Telstra guy concurred, that all our problems with the Nokia were probably a result of Telstra not changing the codes on the account when we switched from a 2G to a 3G device.

Which means I probably just spent $1000 this week for absolutely no reason. Plus I'm stuck with another year of making the remainder of the $36 payments on the Nokia handset, which is not being used.

Is it any wonder, with such excreable sevice that we all hate Telstra. I'm going to be paying the price for this fuck up for a long time.


Check the page set up on your browser to make sure it prints text as black – NOT!

Here's an easy, blatant example of a web site with a built in problem, that the owner acknowledges but who has decided to make it the user's problem.

I picked up a parking ticket the other day and just went to pay the fine. It was with the City of Port Phillip, which like a bunch of councils around Melbourne uses the online payment system (I remember Maxi launching years ago amidst much hullabaloo, ideas like terminals all over the city etc etc. Nowadays it still exists but only for these small irritating payments).

Anyhow, I dutifully pumped my Visa card number in, and back came the receipt page, which is a classic fail. Here's the page:


The text I've highlighted says:

(If you print your receipt, check the page set up on your browser to make sure it prints text as black.)

So of course, red rag to a bull, I clicked the print button, yup, an entire page of dark blue background plus the white text.

They KNOW it's a problem, but they put it onto the user to solve the problem. Hands up everyone who knows how to change the page set up on their browser so that it would reverse or otherwise deal with this ludicrous situation? I do this for a living and I'd probably fiddle for 5 minutes.

Yet the issue is so incredibly simple to fix – just change the styling on the page to a white background and dark text. In fact, I'm positive the last time I used Maxi this issue didn't exist – which means they've updated the site and created a new problem.