Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Bringing a Mobile Phone to Australia

Bringing a mobile phone with you to Australia may be a prudent option. However, you should be mindful of the frequency bands mobile telecommunication providers use in Australia. If your mobile phone does not support the frequency bands used by Australian mobile telecommunication providers, your phone will not work in Australia and you might find yourself needing to buy a new phone if you want to use the Australian mobile network.

Photo by Bruce Mars from Pexels

Cutting the chase, see to it that the particular make and model of your phone supports use of the 850MHz and 900MHz bands. These are the frequency bands Australian mobile networks use for the 3G service. Note, however, that the 3G network will be shutdown in Australia by 2024.

Australian mobile networks operate the 4G service over the 700MHz, 850MHz, 900MHz, 1800MHz, 2100MHz, 2300MHz and 2600MHz frequency bands. Check that the phone you are bringing supports these frequency bands. Even if you are not a tech person, you must understand that mobile coverage throughout Australia does not operate on a single band or frequency. As you move from place to place, the network may be using a different band. Your phone automatically shifts to the right band, but you need to ensure that your phone supports the bands in use in Australia.

Again, to summarise, Australia uses the following frequency bands:

3G over 850MHz and 900MHz bands to phase out 2024
4G over 700MHz, 850MHz, 900MHz, 1800MHz, 2100MHz, 2300MHz and 2600MHz

To verify that your phone supports these bands, check the fine print on the phone packaging box, the manual and other printed matter that came with the phone when you purchased it and, if the packaging or manual are not available, go online and look up your phone at the phone manufacturer's website.

By this time, you should already know that your charger will most probably not plug into the power outlet in Australia. You will be needing a power plug adapter, and it comes as cheap as $5 from Officeworks.

But that is not all.

Upon arrival at any Australian airport, note that you cannot use your mobile phone while undergoing clearance process or when asked not to by a Border Force officer.​

The Border Force will have the power to confiscate your mobile phone for forensic examination under section 186 of the Customs Act. Your phone, if confiscated, will be returned to you within 14 days if it does not contain any material which renders the device subject to seizure under Customs-related laws. It means that it should not contain any form of pornography, pirated movies and software, and other contents of similar nature.

Now that you have your mobile phone, you might be interested to know what the best prepaid mobile phone plan is for you. Read the article Unlimited Calls to the Philippines from Australia on Prepaid Mobile for information.

7:47 PMManny Diaz