In a move that could strip business away from CEDIA members and custom installers as well as PC service Companies, Telstra has rolled out a premium SmartHouse solution that will deliver an array of services for home homers including the setting up of home entertainment gear PC’s and in the future home automation gear such as energy monitoring and security along with 24/7 support if it goes wrong.Telstra Executive Director Consumer, Ms Rebekah O’Flaherty, said the launch of Telstra Plus Premium Support was timely in light of new Telstra research which revealed more than a third of Australians have given up installing a new home gadget because the process seemed too hard.
“From wireless laptops to game consoles and internet-enabled TVs, in the past 12 months alone approximately one-third of Aussies have spent between $1,000 and $3,000 on new gadgets for their home, with one in five investing between $3,000 and $7,000.
“However while we have the latest and greatest multimedia technologies at our fingertips, it seems only a quarter of us feel like we’ve got to grips with their more advanced features – leaving a wealth of useful and entertaining features undiscovered.
“Telstra understands Australians are busy and have better things to do than upgrade computer software, set-up routers or connect notebooks, PCs and iPads to a home network. With Telstra Plus Premium Support, there’s no need to stress about which cord plugs into what – we’re here to make all your techno marvels much more user-friendly.”
Ms O’Flaherty said Telstra has been trialling the new support service over the past two months and have had a great response from customers.
“With up-front quotes and a no fix, no charge policy*, you don’t need to worry about hourly service rates and nasty bill surprises – you’ll know exactly how much you’re paying from the word go.
“Customers can also enjoy the convenience of weekday, weekend and evening appointments, which can be requested at a time that suits them best so there’s no waiting around,” Ms O’Flaherty said.
Prices for the new service will vary between $59 and $269, depending on the level of technical support required and whether the job can be done remotely or requires a home visit. Customers can contact Telstra Plus Premium Support on 1300 087 587 or visit http://www.telstra.com.au/telstra-plus/?red=/telstraplus for more information.
Ms O’Flaherty said Telstra’s research also revealed:
· Generation breakdown: When it comes to purchasing gadgets for the home, older Australians (55+ years) are most likely to base their decision on whether the product is desired by their peers (42% vs 29% of 18-35 year olds). Comparatively, younger Australians (18-35 years) are more likely to wait for the initial rush of people to buy and review a gadget before making their decision (21% vs 14% of 55+ years).
· Men vs Women: While women are more likely than men to give up installing a new gadget because they find the instructions daunting (44% vs 30%), men are more likely to break their new gadget before they’ve got it working (7.4% vs 6.2%).
· State vs State: When it comes to getting the most out of home gadgets, Queenslanders rate themselves highest in terms of using all the advanced features (29%), followed by ACT (26%), NSW (22%) and VIC (21%). Comparatively, Northern Territorians (33%) are the biggest offenders for only using the basic functions of their home gadgets, followed by West Australians (29%) and South Australians (28%).
· The major influencers on which home gadgets we purchase include:
1. Desirability (35%) – I embrace the latest technology if it is wanted by my friends, family and peers.
2. Accessible (21%) – I wait until the technology becomes more readily and easily available.
3. Follower (19%) – I wait for the initial rush of people to buy and review before I make a decision.
4. Progressive (13%) – I have to have the latest gadgets before anyone else.
5. Financial (12%) – I embrace technology only if it is affordable and within my budget.
In addition to this new service, Telstra has recently introduced a new case managed movers program and a 24/7 sales and support service which has received more than one million out-of-work hour enquiries since September.