Mobile Number Portability in India – Details/Perspective

DoT has issued mobile number portability details and the first phase will be rolled out in Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Chennai by September 20th, 2009.

Mobile Number Portability Details :

  • Delhi, Mumbai, Maharashtra and Gujarat Service comprise Zone I – MNP to be implemented by Sep 20, 2009.
  • Kolkata, Tamil Nadu, Chennai, Andhra and Karnataka comprise Zone 2 and details will be finalized by Sep, 2009.
  • Rest of the country by March 20, 2010.
  • Syniverse Technologies (Zone 1) and MNP Interconnection (Zone 2) are the two companies who have been licensed by the DoT to carry out the MNP exercise (source).

As far as cost of the service is concerned, the charges are likely to be less than Rs. 300/ and operators will take maximum 2 days to change the provider.

MNP – To Switch or Not? Some Perspective

Except Finland and HK, most countries have witnessed less than 5% of switch in first 12 months of introduction of MNP.

What about the Indian market?

More than 90% of Indian mobile users are on prepaid connections and do not have number loyalty (~churn rate of 4% on monthly basis) – the switching cost of Rs. 300 is pretty much the same as a monthly rental (or maybe, more than that). Unless operators start offering compelling services, do you sense major uptake in the first few years?

What about the operators?

Do you think MNP implementation will increase the churn rate of operators? What’s the ideal strategy to manage MNP?

My sense says operators will add a lot more nuances (for instance, time bound etc) to ensure that switching cost/experience is fairly high (as ARPU is still sliding).

What’s your take?

More details at DoT site.

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