Media Release, 19 November 2014

Telstra is switching on the first 150 Wi-Fi hotspots in its national Wi-Fi network and announced more than 100 towns and cities that will benefit from the roll out of the hotspots before Christmas.

Starting today, people will be able to trial free Wi-Fi at some of Australia’s busiest and most iconic locations including Bourke Street Mall in Melbourne, Hyde Park in Sydney and King George Square in Brisbane.

Group Executive Telstra Retail, Gordon Ballantyne said Telstra’s plan to roll out the nation’s largest Wi-Fi network across the country was taking shape.

“This trial marks the beginning of our ambition to switch on more than two million hotspots across the nation over five years and give customers the best Wi-Fi experience in and out of the home,” said Mr Ballantyne.

“We want customers to have greater options for connecting when they're out and about. From browsing the web, streaming videos or sharing photos with friends, we want customers to have a taste of what the network will be like next year, when Telstra Wi-Fi members will be able to use their home broadband allowance at the hotspots.

“Today we are also confirming the next hotspot locations set to go live ahead of Christmas, bringing the number of trial sites to 1000. We have selected towns, regional hubs and holiday destinations where we know people will be spending time this holiday season,” Mr Ballantyne added.

Underscoring the national reach of the program, Wi-Fi hotspots will be switched on in communities including Katherine in the north, Byron Bay in east, Launceston in the south and Margaret River in the west.

The first Wi-Fi trials will be located at payphone sites in the heart of local communities in metro and regional areas as well as holiday hotspots, focusing on parts of the communities where people congregate and spend time. In future, Telstra-built hotspots will also be located at Telstra retail outlets and exchange buildings.

Access to Wi-Fi will be free at the 1000 trial sites before the network officially launches early next year.

To login users can:

  • Once they are in range of a hotspot find Free_Telstra_WiFi
  • Accept T&Cs and begin using the free Wi-Fi

When we launch the network early next year Australians will be able to access Telstra Wi-Fi in a number of ways:

  • Telstra home broadband customers with a compatible gateway who join the Wi-Fi community can use their home broadband allowance at domestic hotspots and more than 13 million Fon-enabled hotspots overseas
  • Non Telstra customers and Telstra customers who have not joined the Wi-Fi community will be able to connect to Fon-enabled Telstra Wi-Fi hotspots for a small charge using guest passes