Sunday , October 22 2017

Have you got a Google Pixel on Telstra? Does your VoLTE work?

telstra-pixel

After finally reaching the end of the week, it’s time to set up our new phones if you’ve joined us in buying a new Pixel or Pixel XL this week. If you’re a Telstra customer, you might even be able to take advantage of the Pixel range’s support for VoLTE (or Voice over LTE), which offers high quality voice calls and near instant call setup times. In other words, it’s something rather cool.

If it works.

We’ve tried this on both the Pixel XL in our office, and the Pixel, and while VoLTE works just fine on the Pixel XL, on the Pixel, it’s a different story. We’ve had some experience getting VoLTE working, and unfortunately Telstra’s customer service / technical support staff don’t have a great deal of experience in the area. Some are knowledgeable and able to get things working, and others seemingly know a bit less.

Fundamentally, from a customer perspective, there really shouldn’t be a need to call Telstra just to get this feature working; it should work without requiring interaction, or at worst, without taking more than five minutes to run through a few steps to get it fixed.

Imagine our surprise, then, to find that it took over an hour on Telstra’s Live Chat this evening to try and get VoLTE working on our Pixel, only to end up with the service agent transferring us to his supervisor … who promptly said “just go into a store”.

When it was pointed out that — after an hour on the line — this was a pretty poor approach, with no ifs, buts, questions or comments, the supervisor just killed the chat.

It’s all well and good if things don’t work as they should; mobile networks just are that way sometimes. However, something that makes it significantly worse is when your staff give up and just hang up because fixing the problem apparently is too hard.

We’ve approached Telstra for comment on what’s going on with VoLTE on Pixel, and with their customer service approach as well.

Have you got VoLTE working on Telstra? Have you had an equally poor customer experience? Are you happy with Google’s choice of Telstra as exclusive carrier partner?

 

Chris Rowland   Editor and Publisher

Chris publishes one of Australia's most popular technology websites, Ausdroid. His interests include mobile (of course), as well as connected technology and how it can make all our lives easier.

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27 Comments on "Have you got a Google Pixel on Telstra? Does your VoLTE work?"

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Joseph Seph Sheu
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Joseph Seph Sheu
Chris, hoping either you are able to shed some light, or perhaps another reader can. Interested in getting a Pixel XL, but I am in contract with VF. Would there be any forseeable way to enable VOLTE on another carrier like VF? Since the pixel is exclusive to TLS, it is likely that the other carriers wouldn’t bother with spending time and effort on enabling VOLTE, the commercials are clearly understood here. Surely if VOLTE is a fairly standard feature, then the amount of work to enable for all popular handsets wouldnt be too bad? Is this something google could… Read more »
Chris
Valued Guest
So, VoLTE is a funny beast. The underlying technology is standardised, but it also has significantly more variables than standard circuit-switched voice calls. This is why carriers are so cautious about enabling it on handsets that don’t run their firmware, or that they don’t have some control over. To get VoLTE on your phone, it has to be enabled on your account, and your phone (or type of phone) has to be enabled to access it. This can be on very fine-grained controls, such that a generic S7 can’t access VoLTE, but a carrier branded one can. Even further, particular… Read more »
Joseph Seph Sheu
Valued Guest
Joseph Seph Sheu

Chris,

thanks for the info. I will be getting an XL soon, and my account and SIM is definitely configured (works on my 10). I will see if it works too.

Braedan McNicol
Valued Guest
Braedan McNicol

VOLTE worked fine on my HTC 10

Braedan McNicol
Valued Guest
Braedan McNicol

I have a Pixel XL on Telstra. VOLTE doesnt work at all.

freshj1ve
Valued Guest
freshj1ve

I have the XL and VoLTE isn’t working, even though it’s enabled on my account. Every time I make a call it either drops to 3G or H. I think Google will have to release a patch to get VoLTE to work on the Telstra network.

Chris
Valued Guest

It is starting to look that way, though with the XL at least, I’ve confirmed VoLTE does work. Seems as if there’s definitely some inconsistencies around, though all the feedback I’ve heard is that on XL it mostly works, on Pixel it doesn’t seem to work at all.

freshj1ve
Valued Guest
freshj1ve

Thanks Chris. Wonder why your XL works and mine doesn’t, doesn’t really make sense.. I bought my phone from JB.

Shakeel Ali
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Shakeel Ali

A friendly tip from a Telstra Staff Member. Because VoLTE is being rolled out in waves to all consumer accounts, some people may have it months before others. The easiest way to get it activated if you really want VoLTE right now, is to go into a store. Any retail staff member will be able to add it to your account in minutes. Sadly the support team either havent been trained properly, or genuinely dont know how to do their jobs.

Unit 1pt0
Valued Guest
Unit 1pt0

When calling up Telstra you’ll want to speak to the “Mobile Assurance” team to fix something like this.

Most common reason is what’s called a “misalignment”, where your phone and their back end systems don’t have matching settings. Trust me, you can spend close to a day talking to other teams while figuring out the issue, but this is the problem 90% of the time.

Chris
Valued Guest

Strangely this is what the first consultant I spoke to last night said.. I joked he needed a network chiropractor. Strangely, though, whatever fix he put in place didn’t fix anything.

Member
Generally I’m pretty happy with the service I get from Telstra as a service provider. The Telstra Platinum customer service leaves a lot to be desired. I made 3 phone calls about repeated internet dropouts recently to their premium subscription help service. One apparent “service agent” tried to tell me I should always have my data turned of to use WiFi. She wasn’t impressed when I made the comment that was rubbish and so she hung up on me. I ended up fixing my issue with a Google search in about 5 mins…. Needless to say I cancelled the subscription… Read more »
Member

And this right here is just one example of why I don’t believe or have any faith in Telstra’s so called testing of new updates (or phones for that matter) before they get released.

It’s exactly why they shouldn’t, at any stage, get in the way of device updates.

Paulj939
Valued Guest
Paulj939

I have had this on my Samsung S7 edge for about a month now but wasn’t till I read this that I now know what that Vo)) LTE icon in the status bar means….

Megan Kessey
Valued Guest
Megan Kessey

Same, on my daughter’s S6 but I don’t have it on my S7 egde, just hadn’t got round to investigating it yet!

Member

My can and string works well..

Dan
Valued Guest

I also can’t get it on the 5″ pixel

Adrian Mace
Valued Guest

Equally annoying when Telstra say the same thing when I asked to enable it on my business account.

Can’t be done. *disconnected*

Andrew
Valued Guest
Andrew

I’m on the Pixel XL. Is VoLTE supposed to appear in the notification bar? If so, I’m not seeing it.

Chris
Valued Guest

There’s nothing in the status bar, unlike on a Samsung. Only way you know it’s working is to make a call when on 4G and see if it stays on 4G (thus VoLTE) or drops back to 3G.

Andrew
Valued Guest
Andrew

Alright, then my Pixel XL can’t do it. I’m on 4G then when I’m on a call it drops to HSPA (3G).

Looks like I’ll need to contact Telstra…

Rowan
Valued Guest

Nope. Can’t get it to work on my Pixel either

Chris
Valued Guest

What’s so weird is it works on the XL out of the box. Pixel though… Just refuses.

Rowan
Valued Guest

Hopefully it’s just a patch or something Telstra forgot to turn on. I know you’ll keep us updated 🙂

Chris
Valued Guest

I will indeed because it’s annoying me! Have raised with Telstra via our contacts and via social. Will raise with Google too.

Jamie S
Valued Guest
Jamie S

From reading Telstra crowd support threads in relation to the same issue on Unlocked S7 edge XSA firmware, it appears Telstra just don’t give a stuff. VoLTE appears to work flawlessly on the Optus network according to our good friend Geoff F.

Chris
Valued Guest

Might have to grab an Optus sim to try it out. I miss Geoff on here.

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