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Blue Tick Phones: What is the Telstra Blue Tick?

Like the population of Australia, the mobile networks tend to congregate around the major metro areas along the coast. If you live in one of these cities, you probably have great mobile coverage and might even be able to connect to the new 5G network. However, if you live outside of a metro area where cell reception might not be as reliable, trying to stay connected on your phone can be a challenge. Luckily, Telstra offers its Blue Tick certification to let customers know certain phones have superior coverage in regional and rural Australia. Below, you can find out more about the Telstra Blue Tick program and compare mobile phones that have earned the Blue Tick and can thus claim the best cell reception when out in the bush.


List of Blue Tick phones

The list of Telstra Blue Tick phones is extensive and tends to favour Samsung-brand and Telstra-brand phones. In fact, since 2017 with the Apple iPhone 8, Telstra has not certified any Apple products with their Blue Tick. As of 2021, the most recent lineup of Telstra Blue Tick phones include:

  • Samsung Galaxy A21s
  • Samsung Galaxy A51
  • Samsung Galaxy Note10+ 5G
  • Samsung Galaxy Note20 5G
  • Samsung Galaxy Note20 Ultra 5G
  • Samsung Galaxy S20 5G
  • Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G
  • Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra 5G
  • Samsung Galaxy S20+ 5G
  • Samsung Galaxy XCover Pro
  • Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G
  • Samsung Galaxy S21 5G
  • Telstra EasyCall 5
  • Telstra Essential
  • Telstra Essential Plus 3
  • Telstra Essential Smart 3
  • Telstra Evoke Plus 2
  • Telstra Evoke Pro 2
  • Telstra Flip 3

The Telstra Blue Tick isn’t just for one type of cellphone. The newest 5G-enabled smartphones can get a Blue Tick just as easily as simple flip phones. With the Telstra Blue Tick program, you can find prepaid phones, smartphones with a monthly plan, old-school flip phones, or the newest high-end phones, as long as they pass the Telstra Blue Tick test.

Telstra Blue Tick - Samsung phones

It’s clear that Telstra favours Samsung phones when it comes to the Blue Tick, and you can find both prepaid Samsung phones, and Samsung phones on a monthly plan, that have earned the Telstra Tick.

Prepaid Samsung Blue Tick Phones

If you’re looking for a prepaid phone with a Blue Tick, Telstra has two available from Samsung. Both phones can be purchased outright, and include a Telstra prepaid SIM starter kit with a $10 recharge.

Prepaid Samsung Blue Tick phones
Phone Cost
(mobile plan not included)
Specification and features
Samsung Galaxy A12 $249 Display: 6.5-inch HD+
Storage: 128GB
Rear camera:: 48MP (Main, F2.0), 2MP (Depth, F2.4), 5MP (Ultra Wide, F2.2), 2MP (Macro, F2.4)
Front camera: 8MP (F2.2)
4GX: Yes
5G: No
Samsung Galaxy A21s $299 Display: 6.5-inch HD+
Storage: 128GB
Rear camera:: 48MP (Main) + 2MP (Depth) + 8MP (Ultra Wide) + 2MP (Macro)
Front camera: 13MP (F2.2)
4GX: Yes
5G: No

Source: Providers individual websites. Actual offers may vary. Actual speeds may vary. Comparison does not include all providers, products, or features. Valid September 2021.

Samsung Blue Tick Phones

If you prefer a phone on a plan, or to purchase one of the newest phones outright, many Samsung phones come with the Telstra Blue Tick. If you decide to go the monthly phone payment plan route, you will also need to choose to add a monthly Telstra mobile plan.

Samsung Blue Tick phones
Phone Cost
(mobile plan not included)
Specification and features
Galaxy S20 Ultra 5G 12 months: $166.58/month
24 months: $83.29/month
Outright: $1,999
Display: 6.9 inches
Storage: 128GB GB
Rear camera: 108MP (Wide) + 48MP (Telephoto) + 12MP (Ultra Wide) + VGA DepthVision
Front camera: 40MP Auto Focus (Wide, F2.2) MP
4GX: Yes
5G: Yes
Galaxy Note 20 5G 12 months: $137.41/month
24 months: $68.70/month
Outright: $1,649
Display: 6.7 inches
Storage: 256GB GB
Rear camera: 12MP (Wide) + 64MP (Telephoto) + 12MP (Ultra)
Front camera: Front: 10MP Auto Focus (Wide, F2.2) MP
4GX: Yes
5G: Yes
Galaxy S21+ 5G (128GB) 12 months: $128/month
24 months: $64/month
Outright: $1,536
Display: 6.7 inches
Storage: 128GB
Rear camera: Rear: 12MP (Wide) + 64MP (Telephoto) + 12MP (Ultra Wide)
Front camera: Front: 10MP (Wide, F2.2) MP
4GX: Yes
5G: Yes
Galaxy S21+ 5G (256GB) 12 months: $136/month
24 months: $68/month
Outright: $1,632
Display: 6.7 inches
Storage: 256GB
Rear camera: 12MP (Wide) + 64MP (Telephoto) + 12MP (Ultra Wide)
Front camera: Front: 10MP (Wide, F2.2) MP
4GX: Yes
5G: Yes
Galaxy XCover Pro 12 months: $66.58/month
24 months: $33.29/month
Outright: $799
Display: 6.3 inches
Storage: 64GB
Rear camera: 25MP (Main, F1.7), 8MP (Ultra Wide)
Front camera: 13MP (F2.0) MP
4GX: Yes
5G: No
Galaxy S20 FE 5G 12 months: $83.25/month
24 months: $41.63/month
Outright: $999
Display: 6.5 inches
Storage: 128GB
Rear camera: 12MP (Wide), 8MP (Telephoto), 12MP (Ultra Wide)
Front camera: 32MP MP
4GX: Yes
5G: Yes
Galaxy S21 5G (128GB) 12 months: $104/month
24 months: $52/month
Outright: $1,248
Display: 6.2 inches
Storage: 128GB
Rear camera: 12MP (Wide) + 64MP (Telephoto) + 12MP (Ultra Wide)
Front camera: Front: 10MP (Wide, F2.2) MP
4GX: Yes
5G: Yes
Galaxy S21 5G (256GB) 12 months: $112/month
24 months: $56/month
Outright: $1,344
Display: 6.2 inches
Storage: 256GB
Rear camera: 12MP (Wide) + 64MP (Telephoto) + 12MP (Ultra Wide)
Front camera: Front: 10MP (Wide, F2.2) MP
4GX: Yes
5G: Yes

Source: Providers individual websites. Actual offers may vary. Actual speeds may vary. Comparison does not include all providers, products, or features. Valid September 2021.

Telstra phones with a Blue Tick

It makes sense that Telstra’s own brand of mobile phones - which include smartphones, basic cell phones, and flip phones - are frequently Blue Tick certified. Most of these phones are available prepaid, so you can purchase one outright, and many come with an included Telstra prepaid mobile plan.

Telstra Blue Tick Phones
Phone Cost
(mobile plan not included)
Specification and features
Telstra Lite 2 $49 Display: N/A
Storage: 0.256 GB
Rear camera: 2 megapixel
Front camera: VGA
4GX: No
5G: No
Telstra Evoke Plus 2 $139 Display: 6.5 inches
Storage: 64GB
Rear camera: 16MP(Low Light)+8MP(Wide)+ 2MP(Depth)
Front camera: 8MP (AI Beauty)
4GX: Yes
5G: No
Telstra Essential Plus 3 $119 Display: 5.5 inches
Storage: 16GB
Rear camera: 8 MP with LED flash
Front camera: 5MP with LCD flash
4GX: Yes
5G: No
Telstra Essential Smart 3 $99 Display: 5.5 inches
Storage: 16GB
Rear camera: 5 megapixel with Flash
Front camera: 2 megapixel
4GX: Yes
5G: No
Telstra Essential Smart 2.1 $69 Display: 5.0 inches
Storage: 32GB
Rear camera: 5 megapixel with Flash
Front camera: 2 megapixel
4GX: Yes
5G: No
Telstra Flip 3 $119 Display: N/A
Storage: 4GB
Rear camera: 2 MP
Front camera: N/A
4GX: Yes
5G: No
Telstra EasyCall 5 $129 Display: 2.8 inches
Storage: 4GB
Rear camera: N/A
Front camera: N/A
4GX: No
5G: No

Source: Providers individual websites. Actual offers may vary. Actual speeds may vary. Comparison does not include all providers, products, or features. Valid September 2021.

Telstra Tick FAQ

What is the “Telstra Blue Tick”?

The Telstra Tick program is a program that rigorously tests smartphones for their signal strength, particularly in rural and regional Australia. Phones are tested and classified as A, B, or C with “C” class phones earning the Blue Tick.

If you’re looking for a phone with top-level signal strength (at least, according to Telstra and on the Telstra Network) you’ll want to look for one with a Blue Tick label.

How does Telstra test Blue Tick phones?

Phones are tested for their signal strength and receiver sensitivity, as even the smallest advantages in connectivity can increase cell phone range. Testing includes Telstra technicians physically holding the phone in the air in different directions to check antennae strength, and all Telstra Tick testing is done in controlled settings, for consistent results across the board.

Do I need a Telstra Blue Tick phone?

You don’t necessarily need a Telstra Blue Tick phone, particularly if you live in an urban centre where 4G, and now 5G, coverage is reliable. However, if you’re planning an extended trip to the bush or are planning to move outside of a major city, and want to upgrade your phone anyways it might be worth keeping an eye out for that Blue Tick.

What about other mobile networks?

The Telstra Blue Tick program is only for phones on the Telstra Network. But, what if you’re on the Optus or Vodafone networks instead?

Currently, while there is no equivalent certification for phones on the Vodafone network, Optus does offer its “Top Pick for Regional Coverage” badge. While it might not sound as snazzy as “Blue Tick”, it does give Optus customers peace of mind that any phones on this list (which includes many of the same Samsung smartphones) will offer superior coverage when out in the bush.

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