Council has been advised that Telstra has announced that free Telstra Wi-Fi is now available from around 3,000 Telstra payphones, with plans to upgrade the entire network of almost 12,000 payphones over the coming years. What this means is that Wi-Fi from select payphones will be free for all Australians – whether they are a Telstra customer or not. In Glen Innes this free service is available at the payphone located at 133 Bourke Street, Corner Grey Street.

Payphones continue to play an essential role in connecting communities. Over the past few years, many Australians have used payphones in times of crisis – during natural disasters such as bushfires or floods. Around this time last year, Telstra made calls around Australia from Telstra payphones free. Since then, there has been a significant jump in call volume – by 70 per cent – with around 19 million calls made last year. Many people are using the payphones to access essential services.