Setting up your home internet

Just like your phone, the internet is a great way to keep in touch with your loved ones. These simple step-by-step guides will show how easy it is to make video calls, send and receive emails, use Facebook, browse the web and more.

How do I get on the internet?

You should already have everything you need to connect your home internet. A Telstra modem will have been set up in your home with your previous plan. Connecting won’t require extra cords – it can be done wirelessly (called Wi-Fi). All you’ll need is your desktop or laptop computer, mobile phone, or tablet.

Step 1: Find your Wi-Fi network name and password.

Check the fridge magnet that came with the Telstra modem as it shows your Wi-Fi network’s name and dedicated password. If you didn’t keep your fridge magnet, there will be a sticker on the modem itself. Check all sides of the modem, including under the base. 

Step 2: Turn on your computer’s Wi-Fi.

If you’re using a laptop or desktop computer, find your Wi-Fi or internet icon button. This will appear to the right in the bar along the top of the screen on an Apple computer, or the base of the screen on Windows. Click to open a menu of options, then select ‘Turn Wi-Fi on’, or similar. 

If you’re using a mobile phone or tablet:

On iPhone or iPad, select the ‘Settings’ icon on your home screen, then the option ‘Wi-Fi’. When ‘Wi-Fi’ appears near the top, click the switch button to turn on. 

On an Android device, find and open ‘Settings’ among your apps, then select ‘Connections’. ‘Wi-Fi’ will appear near the top with a switch button. Click this button to turn your Wi-Fi on.

Step 3: Select your Wi-Fi network.

Your device should automatically open a list of available networks. When your Wi-Fi network’s name appears on this list, select it.

Step 4: Enter your password.

When your Wi-Fi network’s name appears on the list, select it and enter the password from your fridge magnet or the sticker on your modem.

Browsing online

Browsing the internet is a great way to stay up to date with the latest news, weather updates, and anything else you might want to find out. Your computer, mobile phone or tablet should already have an internet browsing program set up. When you open this, it will default to a search engine where you can type anything you might want to catch up on.

Safari, Firefox, Chrome, Internet Explorer, Microsoft Edge browser logos

To start browsing on a desktop or laptop computer:

  • Find your computer’s menu of applications and look for your browser – popular ones include Safari on Apple computers; Internet Explorer or Microsoft Edge on Windows computers; or Firefox or Google Chrome on any mobile device.
  • Take a look at your computer to find any of these applications.

Setting up your email

Email isn’t just a great way to keep in touch with people as we spend more time at home, an email address also lets you set up other applications as you become more familiar with using the internet.

To set up your own email address:

  • Open your internet browser (see 'Browsing online' above) and enter in your preferred email provider – Gmail and Hotmail are two popular options. 
  • Once you’ve found it, follow the instructions after selecting ‘Sign up’.

To create a Gmail email account, visit Gmail.com then select the 'Create an account' button and follow the instructions.

To create a Hotmail email account, visit Hotmail.com then select the 'Create free account' button and follow the instructions.

Introducing apps

Apps – or ‘applications’ – are programs which allow you to connect with others and use the internet in the common ways mentioned in this guide. From social media to video calls, there’s a range of apps you might find useful.

To use apps on a laptop or desktop computer, follow these steps:

  1. Open your internet browser (see 'How do I get on the internet?' above) and type the name of the application you’re looking for into the search bar.
  2. Some apps will work in the browser, and others will ask you to download them to your computer – just follow the prompts provided when you find the application you’re interested in using. Note, not all apps are free, but you’ll be asked to confirm you’re happy to pay before any download is finished. Costs are charged through your app store or the website, not Telstra.

Some useful apps on mobile phones are:

Photo/Gallery

View your photos on the Photos app on your Apple device or the Gallery app on your Samsung device. 

YouTube

Watching videos online with the YouTube app on your phone. 

Weather

Check local weather on the Apple Weather app.

Calendar

Save appointments, birthdays, etc onto the Calendar app on your Apple or Samsung device.

Email, apps and social media

Once you’ve set up an email address, you’ll be able to access a range of other important internet services. You can:

  • set up accounts to use social networking sites, like Facebook, WhatsApp or Skype.
  • gain access to online app stores where you can download a range of applications for computers, mobile phones or tablets.

Some apps, like Skype, can be downloaded to make using them easier. Simply use your browser to search, then follow the instructions under 'Sign up'. Or ask a friend or family member for help.

Playing games

Open your browser and search for any game you like - you can play cards, do crosswords, test your trivia knowledge and much more. You can also download a Games app from the App Store or Google Play.

Entertainment online

Internet access gives you a whole new range of entertainment options including the major streaming apps like Netflix, Stan and Binge.

For your favourite movies and TV shows, follow these steps:

Step 1. Choose a streaming service

Open your browser and search for a video streaming service (see section 2). Many free to air TV stations also have their own streaming services, and some will ask you to subscribe with a paid account. Popular paid streaming services include: 
  • netflix.com.au
  • stan.com.au
  • primevideo.com.au 

Step 2. Sign up

Find ‘Sign up’ or similar and follow the prompts to set up an account. Many streaming services have their own app, which you can download for easier access once you’re set up. You’ll find instructions in section above.

Online radio stations

Many radio stations have online listening channels – search for your favourite station in your browser, find their website and look for ‘live streaming’ or similar. Popular online radio stations include:
  • Spotify
  • Apple Music

Staying safe online

The internet is a safe place to explore and enjoy, provided you know how to make safe decisions.

Avoid internet scams

Here’s a simple way to think of making safe choices online: if you wouldn’t do something in your everyday life, avoid doing it on the internet.

If a stranger asks for personal information, like bank account or credit card details, ask yourself if you would give it to them if you weren’t online. Check things come from a reliable source, and if in any doubt, always choose what you feel is the safest option.

Create secure passwords

For some activities, you’ll be asked to set up a ‘Username’ and password to be allowed to use them. Creating a password that’s hard to guess helps keep your information safe.
To create a secure password:

  • Use at least eight characters.
  • Mix numbers and letters (including upper and lower-case).
  • Change your password every 1-3 months.

To learn more about safe internet use, see our page on cyber safety.

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