+ Wednesday October 16th, 2019

A few weeks ago we spotted that voice calls via a Google Home / Nest device through the Telstra network had appeared in the Google Home settings. Today, Telstra has officially announced that they are the first carrier on the planet to provide voice calling via a Google Smart Speaker.

The service allows Telstra customers to make voice calls to any number they could dial from their mobiles, using a compatible Google device. Equally, the calls proceed out over Telstra’s mobile core network and display your mobile number as outbound caller ID, so people will know you’re calling.

To access the feature, firstly you have to be a Telstra mobile customer, secondly, you need any of the following devices a Google Nest Mini, Home, Home Max or Hub. If you meet both of those criteria, you can associate your Telstra mobile account with your Google Nest devices and start voice calling.

To set up the device

  • Open the Google Home app, and head into the Settings option.
  • Open the Services Tab and then Mobile Calling
  • Sign in under the “Telstra” heading
  • You’ll be prompted to agree to terms and conditions, and then the service is configured.
  • You’ll receive a prompt SMS to confirm the setup has been completed.

After that, you’re ready to start making Telstra voice calls from your compatible Assistant devices.

When you make a call, the receiving party sees your Telstra phone number displayed, and while you’re on that call you can still use your mobile. Also for a bit of fun, you can call yourself (if you want to!)

For Telstra customers, calls are at no additional cost to their mobile plan, so if you have unlimited calls on your Telstra plan you now have unlimited calls from your Assistant devices too.

Unfortunately, at this stage, it seems that non-Google Assistant devices (e.g. Lenovo Smart Clock or Smart Displays) aren’t supported. This may or may not change going forward.

For you Optus and Vodafone customers we think there’s not good news for you, Telstra has indicated that the new service is exclusive to Telstra customers for 12 months.

Source: Telstra.

Duncan Jaffrey   Associate

Duncan Jaffrey

Duncan has been interested in technology since coding "Mary had a little Lamb" in Basic on his ZX Spectrum. A fan of all things Android, most days you'll find Duncan trawling the web for Android news or quietly editing away on Map Maker.

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Ben Bradey
Ausdroid Reader

Can’t get this to work on my nest hub max. Keeps making duo calls

Swan
Guest
Swan

Seems to work for Boost customers too.

Les
Guest
Les

Telstra “first in the world”?

But all US and UK Google Home users can make free PSTN calls.

The difference is that Telstra has exclusivity, and its customers must pay according to their mobile plans. All US users get this functionality for free, whether they have a telco account or not.

Exclusivity is very bad, as it prevents someone who has fallen over from using the Google Home to contact emergency services if they’re not a paid Telstra customer.

Ryan
Guest
Ryan

First in the world…. to charge for a free service. Google already has Duo calling which works from my Nest Hub but is dependent on both parties having Duo accounts. Telstra has figured out how to charge for an already free service.

Being as the calls are NOT going through my Telstra mobile and as such I’m not using the Telstra network, the calls should be free.

dazweeja
Ausdroid Reader

It is being routed through the Telstra network. This is just WiFi Calling from a Google Home and it’s charged in the same way.

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