The Telstra Smart Modem is a hybrid modem that acts as both a modem and a router. The modem allows your compatible devices to connect to the internet and can switch to the 4G mobile network when there is an outage or disruption.
There are currently three different generations of the Telstra Smart Modem.
Telstra Smart Modem Gen 2
Telstra Smart Modem
Telstra Frontier Gateway
- The Telstra Smart Modem keeps you online when your home internet service is impacted by an outage or disruption by automatically switching to the Telstra Mobile Network via an inbuilt, pre-activated SIM card, if your home is in a 4G coverage area.
- When your modem is connected to the Telstra Mobile Network, this is referred to as being in 4G mobile back up or connected to the 4G mobile network.
- When the outage or disruption is over, the modem will automatically switch back to your home internet service within minutes. You may not even know it’s happened.
Understanding what the lights on your Telstra Smart Modem mean can help keep you informed about the status of your modem, including if it has switched over to the 4G mobile network.
Telstra Smart Modem Gen 2
- If the light at the front of the modem is green it means your modem is connected to your normal home internet
- If the light at the front of the modem is blue it means your modem is connected to the Telstra Mobile Network
- It is also important to take note of the Mobile Signal strength indicator light when your modem is on the 4G mobile network. If the mobile signal is weak, you may need to move your modem for stronger signal strength.
Telstra Frontier Gateway & Telstra Smart Modem
- If the “online” light on top of the modem is green it means your modem is connected to your normal home internet
- If the “online” light on top of the modem is magenta it means your modem is connected to the Telstra Mobile Network
- It is also important to take note of the Mobile Signal strength indicator light when your modem is on the 4G mobile network. If the mobile signal is weak, you may need to move your modem for stronger signal strength - see below for how to optimise your Smart Modem.
No, you will not incur any additional charges when your modem switches to the Telstra 4G mobile network. When the Telstra Smart Modem connects to the 4G network, it is connecting to the Telstra mobile network and not your personal mobile phone service.
- As the connection speed is capped at up to 12Mbps for download and up to 2Mbps for upload, you may notice a difference in the speed of your service during this time.
- 12Mbps download speeds should be enough to perform most basic online activities such as email and internet browsing. However, the services may not perform to your usual internet speed standards, depending on the speed of your home internet service. When online gaming, streaming or using video chat on the 4G back-up service, you may experience slower speeds, increased latency and load times.
- Telstra Air, Telstra Broadband Protect and some Telstra Smart Home services will not work when your modem switches to the 4G mobile network.
If you have a Telstra home internet plan on the nbn and have a Telstra Smart Modem or a Telstra Smart Modem Gen 2, you should be able to make and receive calls on your home phone as the back-up SIM card in these models has voice capability. You will not incur any additional cost to make these calls while your modem is in back-up.
If you have a Telstra home internet plan on the nbn and have a Telstra Frontier Gateway, you won’t be able to make calls from your home phone when your modem is connected to the 4G mobile network. If you have a nbn voice only connection with Telstra, you should still be able to make and receive calls over the 4G mobile network also.
- It is important that your Telstra Smart Modem stays plugged in so that you experience minimal impacts to your internet during outages and service disruptions. If you have a Telstra Smart Modem and need help setting it up, you can find more information here.
- Repositioning your Telstra Smart Modem may help to improve coverage & Wi-Fi speed and may also help to reduce interference. See some tips below on how to help get the optimal experience from your Telstra Smart Modem.
Move your modem to a central point
This maximises the modem's ability to send a strong signal through your home.
Place your modem well above the floor
Desk or shelf height is ideal. Too close to the ceiling can be as bad as too low to the floor.
Keep modem away from thick walls and solid objects
Solid internal walls can block your Wi-Fi signal.
These will help you identify what's slowing down your Wi-Fi - and stop your shows being buffered!
Speed test your modemYou may find areas where the Wi-Fi is not as strong as it can be
Check for interferenceOther electrical devices can slow down your Wi-Fi.
Turn the modem off. Then on.A simple reboot can noticeably increase your W-Fi speed. (Leave it off for 5-10 seconds.)
Use our app to test your Wi-FiThe Telstra Home Dashboard can show you ways to improve your Wi-Fi.Reduce interference:Devices like microwave ovens, baby monitors, older cordless phones and TVs can interfere with your Wi-Fi .
Look for patternsIs your Wi-Fi affected each time the microwave or cordless phone is used?
Unplug suspect devicesUnplug each device that might be interfering, one by one, to see if your Wi-Fi improves.
Move interfering devicesMove any devices that are causing interference away from your modem.
Upgrade to a smart modemIf you're using an older modem, consider switching to the Telstra Smart Wi-Fi Modem.
- There may be times when your Telstra Smart Modem might not switch over to the 4G mobile network when it should. It could be that your home isn’t receiving 4G coverage or if there is a 4G mobile network outage occurring (click here to check if you’re experiencing an outage). Your Smart Modem may also not work if you are experiencing a power outage.
- If you are still experiencing issues, please contact us.
Things you need to know
4G back-up speeds vary for reasons like location, distance from base stations, terrain, user numbers, hardware/software configuration, download source and upload destination. nbn™, nbn co and other nbn™ logos and brands are trademarks of nbn co limited and used under licence.