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TUCoPS :: Phreaking Technical System Info :: australi.txt

Info about Australia's phone system




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        The Following was Taken From The 2600 Magazine of Spring 1992
                    Text typed by OMEGA / MEGA - Ind.
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            The Australian Phone System (By Midnight Caller)

  In Australia there is one company which controls the nation's public
switched telephone network: The Autralian and Overseas Telecommunications
Corporation, which trades as Telecom Australia.
  Telecom Australia is a federal government-owned statutory corporation
responsible for providing telephone, data, and other communications services
to the public. Put simply, Telecom have a monopoly on first home-phone in-
stallation and the core network (eg: the copper wires, the optical fibre,
the cellular network, etc.)
  This all changed in late 1991 when Telecom was stripped of its monopoly and
forced to compete in a duopoly arrangement with a second carrier until 1997
when the duopoly arrangement expires and it becomes free for all. The federal
government will be issuing a second-carrier license which will allow full
de-regulated competition for the first time in the provision of core network
services. While the telecommunications industry has been de-regulated for 
quite some time (if you didn't like your Telecom phone, you could buy a 
cellular phone or pager from anyone), there has never been any competition on
the initial connection service, or in the on-going provision of service.
  When first offered, 31 different companies, mostly foreign, registered
interest in applying for the license which carries a $3 billion (US$ 2.5 
billion) license fee and includes three operational satellites (which no one
wants), and three others being built (which no one wants either) by Hughes
Aircraft Corporation. 
  There are now three consortiums left in the race: the Bellsouth/Cable and
Wireless consortium (C&W run the Mercury phone company in the United King-
dom), the Bell Atlantic/Ameritech consortium who recently bought the run-
down hovel phone system in that rather odd country next to us, New Zealand,
and a third party which has remained anonymous, though rumour has it that the
third consortium is led by Com Systems.
  It is widely believed that Bellsouth will get the license and Bell Atlantic
will have to be content nursing sheep in New Zealand. As mentioned before,
until 1997 there will be a duopoly, with the exception of a third nationwide
cellular network to be licensed sometime next year or so.

                                The Network

  The Telecom network consists largely of ARE-11 and Ericsson AXE-10 switching
systems though older ARF and step-by-step exchanges still exist in some rural
areas. The Ericsson AXE-10 exchanges are currently the most advanced exchanges
available for use by the general public. At present some 70 percent of the 
Australian telephone network is fully computerised and this is expected to
reach a full 100 percent by around 1994/95.
  The AXE-10 offers all the facilities of what the more advanced Western
Electric ESS systems offer such as Centrex facilities. One notable feature not
offered by Telecom, though it can be made available on the AXE-10 exchanges,
is ANI. Considering the problems US phone companies have encountered in of-
fering ANI services, Telecom has never made any comment on the facility,
though Bellsouth has said that it would be one of the new features it would
introduce should it be successful in bidding for the second carrier license.
  DTMF dialling is available as standard on the AXE-10 exchanges while those
decrepit individuals unlucky enough to be on ARE-11 exchanges (like me) must
apply for a DTMF service. It doesn't cost any extra, but it keeps a few 
failed bureaucrats in a job if you have to apply for it. The ARE-11 exchanges
are far less advanced than the AXE-10's. They do not offer any of the Centrex
or Easycall facilities (such as call waiting, three-way call, call diversion,
ANI, etc.) that the AXE-10 offers.
  The telecom network command center is located in Exhibition Street in the
center of Melbourne with a fallback command center located in the Melbourne
suburb of Windsor. Smaller network command centers are located in each state
capital.
  These two locations control all network management functions nationwide for
all exchanges with the exception of the old step-by-step exchanges. They also
control the nationwide data services and other special services such as 
Austpac (X.25), Iterra (Satellite), ISDN, DDN Flexnet (Digital data Network),
MobileNet (Cellular), as well as a host of other services.
  Being Telecom's home city, the central area of Melbourne is also the only
city to be fully linked up with optical fibre at this time. Telecom is 
gradually overhauling its inter-city trunk lines with optical fibre (with the
microwave network acting as a backup). Melbourne, Canberra, and Sydney are
linked together by a 1000 km long stretch of fibre optic cable, with other
links currently under way.

                                Payphones

  There are five types of payphones in use around Australia. These are: The
PhoneCard payphone (the new standard payphone), CardPhone (for credit and
debit cards), Bluephone, Goldphone (being replaced by Bluephone), and the
older rotary dial payphones which are progressively being phased out.
  PhoneCard Payphone: the new standard payphone in Australia is the new
Telecom Phonecard Payphone. This phone uses either coins or pre-paid 
telephone cards similar to the cards that NTT (Japan) used to use in their
payphones until the introduction of smartcard telephone cards. These pay-
phones are usually located in places such as airports, hotels, and on the
street.
  Cardphone Payphone: these payphones only accepts credit or debit cards 
such as Amex, Visa, Mastercard, and debit cards issued by most of the banks.
To place a call, a customer swipes their card through the card reader, then
enters their PIN number. After this is verified, the caller dials the number
they want and the call is charged back to their card. These phones are lo-
cated in airports, tourist areas, hotels and some central city locations.
They are generally not located in the street.
  BluePhone Payphone: The BluePhone was so-called because it is blue - pretty
imaginative. These accept coins only and are only located indoors. Most may
be found in bars, groceries, supermarkets, restaurants, 7-11's, stores and
hotels. These are never located on the street.
  GoldPhone Payphone: Prior to the world's greatest marketing coup, the Blue-
Phone, Telecom's crack advertising team christened the GoldPhone - it was
gold. The GoldPhones are unimpressive indoor phones such as the BluePhones
(See 2600 Spring 1990 for Photo) and are gradually replaced by the BluePhones.
  CrapPhone Payphone: So named because that is what it is. This has been the
Telecom standard payphone for more than 10 years. While some have had push-
button dialers installed, most still use rotary dial mechanisms. These pay-
phones are easily distinguishable from their robust, but dull, metallic green
appearance. The unit itself is made of two inch thick steel. These phones may
be found in streets but are being progressively replaced bu the PhoneCard
payphone. By replacing coin-only payphones with card-accepting phones, Telecom
hopes to reduce the level of vandalism affecting payphones.

                                Operator Numbers

000   : Emergency Operator (Ask operator for emergency service. Or dial direct
        on the following three numbers.)
11440 : Ambulance / Paramedic
11441 : Fire
11444 : Police
013   : Directory Assistance (Local)
0175  : Directory Assistance (Intra and Interstate)
0103  : Directory Assistance (International)
1100  : Service Faults
1104  : Cellular network faults
0173  : Wake up calls
011   : Operator Connect (Within Australia)
0101  : Operator Connect (International)
0108  : Calls to ships at sea
1139  : Changed number directory

                            Long Distance Operators

001-488-1150 : Canada
001-488-1459 : Denmark
001-488-1358 : Finland
001-488-1330 : France
001-488-1180 : Hawaii
001-488-1852 : Hong Kong
001-488-1620 : Indonesia
001-488-1390 : Italy
001-488-1810 : Japan
001-488-1820 : South Korea
001-488-1310 : Netherlands
001-488-1640 : New Zealand (TCNZ)
001-488-1650 : Singapore
001-488-1440 : U.K. (British Telecom)
001-488-1011 : U.S. (AT&T - USA Direct)
001-488-1100 : U.S. (MCI - Call USA)

                        Other/Special Numbers

199      : Ringback
552-4111 : Telecom Line Identifier (gives you the number you are calling
           from if on ARE-11 or AXE-10 exchange)
01921    : Austpac (X.25) 300 Bps
01922    : Austpac (X.25) 1200 Bps
01923    : Austpac (X.25) 1200/75 Bps
01924    : Austpac (X.25) 2400 Bps
01925    : Austpac (X.25) 4800 Bps
01928    : Austpac (X.25) 9600 Bps
0193111  : Discovery 2400 Bps
01955    : Discovery 1200/75 Bps
01956    : Discovery 2400 Bps

                    Australian Capital City Area Codes

02  : Sydney, NSW
03  : Melbourne, VIC
06  : Canberra, ACT
07  : Brisbane, QLD
08  : Adelaide, SA
09  : Perth, WA
002 : Hobart, TAS
089 : Darwin, NT


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          This was Taken From The 2600 Magazine of Spring 1992
                    Text typed by OMEGA / MEGA - Ind.
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