Friday, 10 September 2010

Telstra's real test

Telstra put to the test
It is time to put Telstra to a real test as a belated part of the social review program for the HTC Desire.

My HTC Desire has developed the well documented HTC Desire overheating issue where the phone goes into restart loops without booting when using graphically or network intensive software.

I will put a timer up on my blog to signify how long it takes Telstra to rectify the issue. As Telstra has launched a new "Better customer service" campaign it is time to put it to the test.

My first call to Telstra will be today on the 10th September 2010.

Telstra phone support:
Frustrated again at the automated receptionist
Spoke to Bell located in the philippine islands within the Telstra technical support call centre who had trouble understanding my language, making it very difficult to explain the situation.

Call forwarded to HTC customer support. Telstra call centre taking absolutely no responsibility.

HTC phone support:
Receptionist answered to say all technical support was unavailable and they will call me back.

Called back 24 hours later with rudimentary customer support such as re-flashing Telstra modified RUU rom onto phone. (Maybe not rudimentary for some users, but very easy on android devices)
After completing basic troubleshooting HTC said the problem was hardware based and Telstra would have to deal with the issue. Calling Telstra back would simply result in getting forwarded to HTC again!

HTC and Telstra phone support have failed in basic customer service, making it very difficult for those not able to visit a Telstra store to get any decent service.

Telstra Twitter Support:
Tweeted my problem, very speedy response from Carly in Adelaide who knew exactly what to do. Now talking to Tristo, a solutions provider.

Within 3 hours the Telstra Twitter support team had contacted the correct department to resolve the issue. I have been asked to send my phone by post to get fixed.
Phone has been posted express post. Will await a further response.

So far a very intelligent, rapid and effective response from the Telstra Twitter team.

The Telstra repair team
(Edit: 7 October) The phone is now back and doesn't seem to be overheating but it looks like the microphone has stopped functioning due to the repair. I have replied to Telstra with the original information and the problem that the repair has caused. The phone has been sent back to Telstra for further repair.

(Edit: 6 December) The repair team has replaced the phone with another HTC desire. The second hand phone they supplied works fully however the phone they supplied was second hand and shows signs of wear and tare on the device, whereas the one I sent away was spotless, had no damage and a screen protector.

When posting the phone I sent it away inside it's original box with bubble wrap inside protecting it from any bumps while on route. When it arrived back the new phone was in the box, but no bubble wrap or protection in any way so it could bounce around the box in transit.

Resolved in 86 days
Now that the phone has arrived back in full working order the issue can be considered resolved.
The verdict?

Clearly the new Twitter support team is worth their weight in gold. 

The Telstra call centres are just as useless as we perceive them to be.

Telstra repair team gets the job done but very slowly and without testing the device after repair.

If I did not have a standby phone I would have been very annoyed. The time it took to resolve this issue was close to 3 months. I expect more out of a carrier. With any luck this will improve with the separation of Telstra as the lazy retail section can no longer rely on the wholesale section for market advantage.


  1. hmm.... would that have happened with the iPhone? The worst heating thing they had was found to be caused by people putting the phone into poorly designed 3rd party cases... I gather the desire was without case?

  2. My phone lives in 35C heat, more or less day and night, inside a leather pouch.

    I don't deny that apple phones are physically designed well, except for the fact that they only have one button, much like their mac mouse. Really the only issue I have with the iPhone is their poorly designed operating system, inability to manage your own software without itunes, Can't add or remove 'features' from the software such as the home screen interface, no flash, need I go on?

    Yes I concede that the iPhone is a better phone, but in my opinion that fact is far outweighed by the freedom, flexibility, intuitiveness and geek chic that comes with Android.