Telstra today launched Australia’s first text message service for home telephones, giving more than 10 million households the chance to join the “texting” revolution. The launch of this text message service means home phone users with compatible services can now read and send text messages on their landlines using specially designed telephones in the same way they do with mobile phones.
Is it just us, or does anyone else think this is uncommonly useless? “We anticipate that having text messaging available on the home phone will trigger a new wave of text messaging popularity, particularly among mums, dads and grandparents.” WWJ thinks Telstra’s launch of i-mode was a much more positive move for consumers and shareholders alike.
Telstra’s Head of Consumer Marketing, Jenny Young, said the new home text messaging service would provide an important bridge between text savvy mobile phone users and the home phone market.
“Text messaging is already extraordinarily popular in Australia with more than 100 million SMS sent by Telstra customers each month,” she said. “We anticipate that having text messaging available on the home phone will trigger a new wave of text messaging popularity, particularly among mums, dads and grandparents.
“Text messaging on home phones is set to help families stay in touch. For example, teenagers who are out and about can now text home to let their parents know where they are, or that they need a lift home.
“Conversely, parents can now send a text message from their home phone to their teenager’s mobile asking what time they’ll be home.”
Cathy Freeman today sent Australia’s very first text message from a home phone. Her message was sent to athlete, Kyle Vander Kuyp, who is training for the Melbourne 2006 Commonwealth Games. Cathy wrote:
“Kyle. Keep up the training – 2006 Comm Games will b awesome. Cathy.”
Sending text messages from your home phone is simple. Telstra customers with a compatible service and an SMS-enabled home phone use their keypad to send text messages just as they would to send text on a mobile phone.
To send text messages to a home phone, simply type the message, key in the full 10-digit fixed phone number including the STD area code without spaces (eg. 0297101234) and press send.
Reading a text message on one of the new telephones is identical to reading a text message on a mobile phone. Even homes without a new SMS-enabled phone can receive SMS using Telstra’s Talking Text” service that was launched in 2004 and converts text messages into speech that is relayed to the person answering the home phone.
Ms Young said the new text messaging service was the latest example of Telstra striving to deliver products and services that enhance the lives of its customers.
“Text messaging makes the home phone more versatile than ever before,” she said. “It follows the roll-out of hundreds of SMS-enabled public payphones across Australia.”
SMS-enabled phones are priced from $129.95 from Telstra Shops and are also available at other retailers. Telstra home phone customers pay no additional monthly fee for access to the text messaging service and SMS cost 25 cents each to send from the home phone.
To help first-time-texters, Telstra has launched an online SMS dictionary designed to assist in deciphering text message abbreviations. The dictionary can be found online at: http://www.telstra.com.au/talkingtext/dictionary.cfm
Text messaging on home phones is currently exclusive to Telstra, and customers of Telstra resellers. Other operators expected to follow and introduce the service later in the year.
For more information on text messaging from your home phone visit:
http://www.telstra.com.au/talkingtext/index.htm or telephone 1800 008 135.
Editors: High resolution images of Cathy Freeman sending Australia’s first text message from a home phone are available for download from the Media Centre photo library.
Tel: (02) 9298 4619 or Mob: 0409 369 711