Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Number portability could be delayed

reports the Hindu Businessline.

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India may push back the implementation of mobile number portability (MNP) by 1-2 years due to technical and commercial issues raised by the operators.

TRAI had earlier set a deadline of April 1, 2007 for all operators to introduce the system, which would enable mobile users to retain their phone numbers even as they change the operator.

Obviously the road is not smooth with the operators all up in arms against it.

The move to introduce the MNP has, however, been opposed by the cellular operators on account of the huge investment required (pegged at Rs 1,000 crore) to implement the system. Operators have also raised technical issues such as interoperability and creating a central database of phone numbers, which may hinder proper implementation of the system.

Cellular operators have said that instead of spending the resources in implementing the MNP, it would be better to focus on rolling out mobile infrastructure in rural areas.

One the one hand TRAI does have a point, but then who expected the operators to colloborate wholeheartedly on this one. Then again, if someone wants to get your number badly, they always will figure out how, number portability or not!

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