Telstra is upgrading the mobile network in Bega over the next couple of weeks, which will see 5G become available in the area for the first time.
However, to do this, the telco will need to shut down one of the base stations it has in town while work is carried out, meaning customers may see some short-term coverage impacts.
Chris Taylor, Telstra's NSW general manager said starting from early next week, Telstra will be undertaking upgrade work to one of the three Telstra mobile base stations in Bega. The tower being upgraded is located in Gipps St.
"This work will see our 4G service improved and will also see the activation of 5G in this location as well," Mr Taylor said.
"Impacted Telstra customers may have already received a text message advising them of this outage.
"The work will require Telstra to shut off the tower for extended periods over several days. While our crews need to work during daylight for safety, we'll only be switching off the sites when we need to and we'll have it back on as quickly as possible. If everything goes well, the upgrade is expected to fully completed by mid-May."
Mr Taylor said landlines and NBN services will not be impacted, and there will still be some Telstra coverage in the town due to the two other existing sites.
"However, this site primarily services the CBD area and some people may still notice an impact to their service during this time.
"Telstra apologises for any inconvenience caused as a result of this network upgrade.
"There's never a good time to undertake this sort of work but once it is completed, it will mean better mobile services for Bega residents."
Tips for customers
Some businesses may experience issues with their EFTPOS machines during this time.
Telstra does not operate the EFTPOS network, it is operated by financial institutions. While some EFTPOS terminals use Telstra 3G and 4G connectivity, many EFTPOS terminals can also be connected using fixed line or Wi-Fi/NBN internet connections. Retailers should contact their bank for more information and details on how to switch between these methods.
For people with a Samsung or Apple mobile device purchased in recent years, Telstra also encourages people to activate Wi-Fi calling on their phone. This is a free setting and enables you to make and receive mobile calls when logged into a Wi-Fi network. To find out more google Telstra Wi-Fi Calling.
About Telstra 5G
Mr Taylor said there were more than one million 5G devices already connected to the Telstra network and thousands more being added every week
"We're continually expanding our 5G network across New South Wales and we're adding up to 60 new Telstra 5G sites to the network every week across the country.
"The recent 5G network upgrade will also deliver improved 4G capacity and speeds in the local area.
"More than 60 per cent of Australia's population now lives in Telstra's 5G footprint and Telstra has made a commitment to roll out its 5G network to 75 per cent of the population by the end of June 2021.