Telstra Blue Tick: how we test on Australia’s best

In recent decades, connectivity has become more important than ever – and in remote areas, it can be the difference between isolation and community. That’s why we’ve been testing phones for the past 15 years to see if they deserve a Blue Tick.

The Telstra Blue Tick is the mark we give to phones that our engineers and technicians have rigorously 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 to find coverage in remote areas, it’s a point of pride for us to be able to rely on the Blue Tick across devices. There are many factors that can affect signal strength, but with Blue Tick testing, one of the main ones we test is how our bodies affect the signal.

When you’re holding your phone, your hand and all the beautiful things in your body—which is mostly water—work to essentially absorb and almost block parts of the signal. Engineers call it a “detuning” effect, and it can have a real impact on your overall coverage.

In fact, your hand position and size are so important that to ensure consistency, we’ve been using the same man and his hand to hold the devices during testing for over a decade.

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

How we test for Blue Tick


If you’re having trouble getting cellular coverage in regional areas, don’t leave your phone out. Watch this video! #bluetick #telstra #partner

♬ original sound – Max Hawker

When Blue Tick first started out, a great team of Telstra technicians and engineers went through a series of devices to test exactly how they performed. While there, they pioneered a testing regimen that is still in use today.

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

Today, we don’t have to go into the wilderness for every test, but we can perform most of our testing in purpose-built device testing facilities. Here we can simulate exactly how a new phone would perform as if it were held in your hand at the very edge of a coverage area.

We seal the handsets in our specialized anechoic chamber to ensure that the tests are accurate and that only the best performing devices are given the prestige to wear the Blue Tick. And just to be extra sure that the handset performs well, we’re taking it to rural areas to replicate these test results for double confirmation of its performance.

We’ve got the engineering genius Max Hawker here to show you how it works.

Cover Tips for Blue Tick

If you want all the coverage you can get and get the most out of your Blue Tick phone, we’ve got a few tips you can follow straight from our lab.

  • Keep your phone as light as possiblehow you hold your phone is very important. So the next time you try to make a call on the edge of coverage, try not to squeeze the life out of your phone.
  • Enable WiFi calling and SMS – if you’re out of range but not inside your house, you can enable Wi-Fi calling and texting to make calls or texts as normal over your home internet, even without cellular coverage
  • Use a headset or headphones to make calls – you don’t have to worry about how you hold your phone when you’re not holding it, right?
  • Take a look at repeaters or antennasan external antenna or repeater is much larger than the antenna in your phone and can pick up coverage that your phone can’t. Then it repeats that signal over short distances that your phone can connect to.

Blue Tick devices for every budget

Blue Tick isn’t just for premium devices. Whether you’re looking for something simple or the very latest, there are Blue Tick devices across our range.

Harry Tucker
Harry Tucker

Specialist writer – Telstra

Harry is a technology writer and editor at Telstra Exchange. Harry joined Telstra in late 2020 after a struggle in the trenches of the tech and startup space. He was previously the Technology Editor at Business Insider, the Australian launch editor of the telco comparison site and a reporter at He likes to break down really technical topics and make them digestible and fun to read for everyone. Outside of work, he has an uncanny ability to turn any conversation into something about Formula 1 or the NBA.

#Telstra #Blue #Tick #test #Australias

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