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025 Network Shutdown - 31 March 2007

025 Network Shutdown - 31 March 2007

Nearly 400,000 Telecom customers have moved from the 025 cellphone network to 027 over the past 18 months, taking advantage of a superior network and a suite of new services.

Telecom Head of Consumer Marketing Kevin Bowler said the 025 network is due to shut down on 31 March 2007.

“The 025 network is old technology, it was introduced in the 1980s and mobile technology has advanced rapidly over the past two decades,’’ Mr Bowler said.

Both the 025 network and 025 phones are increasingly difficult to repair with parts scarce and very few countries still operating an analogue network.

At Telecom’s full year result in early August there were approximately 83,000 customers on the 025 network compared with 478,000 12 months earlier. Telecom will report updated 025 customer numbers at its Q1 financial result next month.

“The majority of customers still on 025 are prepaid and these are customers who tend to use their phones infrequently.”

Mr Bowler said that Telecom had been working with customers to migrate them from 025 to 027 in advance of the network closure on 31 March 2007. Customers are being offered a range of options including discounted upgrades to meet their specific needs.

As well, customers who migrate before 31 March 2007 will be able to retain their number as the only change will be the prefix from 025 to 027 and they can have a free call diversion service for 12 months which will automatically transfer any calls from a customer’s 025 number to their new 027 mobile.

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Telecom will continue to contact customers on 025 network to advise them of the wide range of upgrade options.

Mr Bowler said overall 027 coverage was superior to 025, it also provided a range of voice and data services and less than 10% of 025 handsets were text capable.

Telecom would ensure that 025 handsets placed in recycling bins at all Telecom stores would be recycled and disposed of in a responsible and environmentally friendly way.

Telecom has invested more than $250 million in mobile technology over the past three years.

ENDS

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