Surrender of DECT phones

04/04/2018 17:00

The Consumer Council of Fiji is requesting the Telecommunications Authority of Fiji (TAF) to provide more time to consumers for the surrender of Digitally Enhanced Cordless Telephones (DECT) and compensate those who unknowingly bought the device from the marketplace.

 It is to be noted that majority of the consumers bought the device from the local stores and very few bought them from overseas. 

TAF should have ensured that such device was not sold in the shops in the first place if it was a prohibited item. Some form of compensation should be given to consumers who are required to surrender their devices. 

TAF had announced that devices such as wireless modems, wireless cameras, wireless MICS and DECT phones were interfering with 3G mobile networks. And they also advised consumers to surrender these devices within a period of 30 days or face a fine of $20,000 or an imprisonment term of 24 months. 

The Council understands the Authority’s need to minimise disruptions to internet connectivity speed and the quality of calls, however, consumers must also be considered. Consumers purchased the devices without any intent to cause interference, they did so because it was being offered on the market. 

The Council is also urging consumers not to panic and ensure that they are aware of the types of devices that need to be returned. Consumers need to check the model number at the back of their device and search in the internet for its frequency bandwidth. If the frequency bandwidth is 700MHz, 900MHz, 1800MHz, 1900MHz, and 2100MHZ then the item must be surrendered to TAF office. 

Alternatively consumers can also check with the Authority if their device is affected. 

TAF should also provide alternative places where consumers can return the devices besides their office in Suva.