Telstra Blue Tick: how we test Australia’s best

Over the past two decades, connectivity has become more crucial than ever – and in remote areas, it can mean the difference between isolation and community. That’s why, for 15 years, we’ve been testing phones to see if they deserve a blue tick.

The Telstra Blue Tick is the mark we give to phones that our technicians and engineers have thoroughly tested to ensure they provide superior voice coverage in rural and regional areas.

We test every phone we sell on our network, but only the best get a Blue Tick.

More than a coverage map

When you rely on knowing where you can find coverage in remote areas, being able to trust the Blue Tick on different devices is a source of pride for us. Many factors can impact signal strength, but with the Blue Tick test, one of the most important we test is our body’s impact on the signal.

When you’re holding your phone, your hand and all the nice things in your body – which are mostly made up of water – basically work to absorb and almost block out certain parts of the signal. Engineers call this a “detuning” effect and it can have a real impact on your overall coverage.

In fact, the position and size of your hand is so important that to ensure consistency, we’ve used the same guy and the same hand for over a decade to hold the devices under test.

The strength of a phone’s antenna can also make a big difference in terms of connectivity, which we test on all our connected devices. Even a small amount of extra signal strength (measured in dBM) can result in miles of extra coverage when you’re at the edge of connectivity.

How we test Blue Tick


If you’re having trouble getting mobile coverage in regional areas, don’t leave your phone just yet. Watch this video! #bluetic #telstra #partner

♬ original sound – Max Hawker

When Blue Tick started, a team of Telstra technicians and engineers set out with a range of devices to test exactly how well they performed. While there, they pioneered a test scheme that is still used today.

Originally testing was only done with our 3G network, but in recent years voice calling testing on our 4G VoLTE network has become part of the process, with Samsung’s Galaxy S8 being the first phone 4G to receive the Blue Tick in 2017.

These days, we don’t need to go to the bush for every test, but we can do most of our testing in purpose-built device testing facilities. Here we are able to simulate exactly how a new phone would perform as if it were held in your hand at the edge of a coverage area.

We seal handsets in our specialized echo-free chamber to ensure testing is accurate and only the best performing devices receive the prestige of carrying the Blue Tick. And to make sure the handset performs well, we then take it to rural areas to replicate those test results for double confirmation of its performance.

Here we have tech genius Max Hawker to show you how it works.

Cover tips for Blue Tick

If you want to get all the coverage possible and get the most out of your Blue Tick phone, we’ve got some tips to follow, straight out of our lab.

  • Hold your phone as light as possiblehow you hold your phone matters a lot. So the next time you try to make a call at the edge of coverage, try not to exhaust the life of your phone.
  • Enable Wi-Fi Calling and Texting – If you have coverage outside but not inside your home, you can enable Wi-Fi Calling and Texting to make phone calls or text as usual using your internet domestic, even without any mobile coverage
  • Use headphones or earphones for calls – you don’t have to worry about how you’re holding your phone if you’re not holding it, do you?
  • Take a look at repeaters or antennasan external antenna or repeater is much larger than your phone’s antenna and can pick up coverage that your phone can’t. It then repeats that signal over short distances for your phone to connect.

Blue Tick appliances for all budgets

Blue Tick isn’t just something for high-end devices. Whether you’re looking for something basic or the latest, there are Blue Tick appliances across our range.

Harry Tucker
Harry Tucker

Specialist Writer – Telstra

Harry is a writer and technology editor at Telstra Exchange. Harry joined Telstra in late 2020 after hard work in the trenches of the tech and startup space. Previously, he was technology editor at Business Insider, editor of the Australian launch of telecommunications comparison site and a reporter at He loves breaking down really technical stuff and making it digestible and fun for everyone to read. Outside of work, he has an incredible ability to turn every conversation into something about Formula 1 or the NBA.

#Telstra #Blue #Tick #test #Australias

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