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How will mobile number portability help? Users speak

Last updated on: January 25, 2011 06:57 IST

How will mobile number portability help? Users speak

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Manu A B and Indrani Roy Mitra in Mumbai/Kolkata

Mobile number portability is a dream come true for over 680 million cell phone users in India. While aggrieved mobile subscribers are all set to switch over to new a telecom operator, others are hoping to be rewarded for their loyalty.

Customers will have to pay a maximum of Rs 19 to an operator to change their network while retaining their existing phone numbers and the new operator has the option to either waive the fee or reduce it.

However, a consumer will be required to continue with an operator for a minimum period of three months in order to avail the MNP service.

So what would you do now that MNP is here? Will you change your operator and move to another one?

Mobile subscribers across India are upbeat about MNP. Here we speak to some of them to find out what they think of MNP.

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Image: A construction supervisor speaks on a mobile phone amid rolls of underground telephone cable pipes.
Photographs: Krishnendu Halder/Reuters.
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'It will ensure survival of the best service'

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Kiran Joshi
Branch Head
Blue Lotus Communications, Chandigarh

I don't have any hassles with my current service provider. So I am not very keen to change it unless the other telecom service providers offer an innovative package.

There is already Commercial Darwinism in the wireless world. Mobile number portability will stiffen the competition further.

It will ensure survival of the best service provider, the one who can attract and retain the customer.

This will translate into better customer service, wide network coverage and low tariff plans for the customers.

Moreover, in course of time it will provide respite to the people in transferable jobs from changing numbers every time they move to a new city.

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Image: Kiran Joshi.

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'MNP will lower tariffs further'

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Suyash Trivedi
Media professional, Mumbai

I am a Vodafone subscriber and I am not happy with their customer service.

Mobile number portability is a great initiative, which will keep companies at guard, lower prices and make services more efficient.

It gives you freedom not to stick to one operator as the number remains the same if even I switch to another operator.

I might to a new operator based on the blackberry plans that other service providers offer. I am not sure how long the process would take, if it simple and not time consuming, I would like to change.

Click NEXT to read on. . . 


Image: Suyash Trivedi.

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'MNP service is a boon to the customers'

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Col. Ajit Deshpande
VP-HR & Admin, Phadnis Infrastructure, Pune

I am not at all happy with the service now. I frequently experience call drops during evening. I always face conjunction problems, Internet and GPRS connectivity is very slow during day time.

MNP service is a boon to the customers. It is a great service for people who think mobile number must be for a lifetime.

Now that customer have more choices, network providers have to improve their service, provide more value addition services at competitive rates to retain their present customers.

If the service of the existing network provider does not improve, I might switch to another network provider who can offer a better service.

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Image: Col. Ajit Deshpande.

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'I am expecting a better service with MNP'

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Kranthi Kiran Vistakula
Founder& CEO, Dhama Apparel Innovations
Hyderabad

I am not completely happy with the current service because lack of clarity during calls.

With MNP, I am expecting a better service, which is needed for current cellular market.

MNP will make an impact only if the rules are not manipulated. Policy changes (by operators by way of influence or corruption) will create an adverse effect.

I am doubtful about the operator till they provide good service. It would have been nice if there was national number portability. I have a number from Ahmebabad which I would like to change to a Hyderabad-based operator, where I am currently located.

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Image: Kranthi Kiran Vistakula.

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'MNP finally brings the perfect competition'

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Naman Sarawagi
Product head, Freecharge.in, Mumbai

I find the network coverage and customer care very bad.

Mobile number portability is a good step as it finally brings the perfect competition.

It will make telecom services better, but only when people really exercise the opportunity to switch. It's a long term play which can be won only with consistent quality.

I am switching to Airtel for better network coverage.

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Image: Naman Sarawagi.

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'Customers get freedom with MNP'

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Sabarinath C
Technology marketing professional, Chennai

I am happy with the service for my prepaid number, but not for postpaid connection I have.

Mobile number portability gives consumers the freedom to choose the best service provider without losing a number one may have been using for a long time.

The fear of losing customers to competitors should force the companies to keep up good services, as well as reward customers for loyalty.

Till now there has been more focus on getting new customers than retaining old customers. Hopefully this will change with MNP.

I am not planning to switch to a new operator as I am quite happy with the current provider.

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Image: Sabarinath C.

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'MNP, a threat to the poor service provider'

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Ajay Adkar
(DGM- Operations), DesignTech, Pune

I am very happy with the current service provider.

Mobile portability has finally arrived after being delayed for years. This is a great step towards consumer interest protection. Now consumers will have a choice to shift to the better service provider, which acts as a threat to the poor service provider.

Hopefully the procedure to shift to the new operator will be simple and cheap.

At least operators will not afford to ignore consumers and will force them to provide good service.

I do not plan to change the service provider.

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Image: Ajay Adkar.

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'MNP to solve many problems'

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Pooja Sabhandasani
Research Executive, Brix Research, Mumbai

I face network problems, unwanted service activation and too many advertising and sales calls. So I am not happy with the service now.

In the era of communication, MNP is well desired from consumers' point of view. It will definitely make services better and will hopefully solve many problems.

I will switch to a new operator as the Reliance network has been putting me in trouble during important conversations with clients and colleagues.

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Image: Pooja Sabhandasani.

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'MNP is a move to empower the customers'

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Aneesh Ajayan
PGP student, IIM, Raipur

I am happy with my present telecom operator. From 2006-2010, I was an Airtel customer in Kerala. Barring the occasional dissatisfaction with some plans, I was satisfied with the service.

When I shifted to Bengaluru and subsequently to Raipur, Chhattisgarh, I switched to Tata Docomo.

The service of Tata Docomo in Bengaluru was marred with some connectivity and coverage issues.

But in Raipur, I am extremely happy with the service. However, I would like the customer service executives in Chhattisgarh to speak English.

Mobile number portability is good step.

There are many people who are stuck to the same provider just because they don't want to go through the hassle of changing their phone number all over again. A phone number has grown to become a person's identity too, and in such a case the MNP is a great move.

This will certainly help in making telecom services better. It will make telcos increase their competency. If the customers are unhappy, they can easily switch their network.

MNP is a move to empower the customers of the telecom industry. This will go a long way in pushing the telecom operators to better their services to compete more with each other.

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Image: MNP, a boon for customers.

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'MNP=healthy competition'

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Arup Chakraborty
Employee, Family Credit

Are you happy with the service of your telecom operator?

Yes I am quite satisfied with the service I get.

Do you think mobile number portability is a good step?

Of course. We are living in a tech savvy world. Hence the more flexibility is introduced, the better it is.

Will it help in making telecom services better?

I think so. With mobile number portability being in vogue, a healthy competition will emerge among various telecom operators and they will vie with each other to provide better service to their clients.

Hence, the latter will benefit the most out of the system.

Will you switch to a new operator?

No, not at the moment.

Why?

I am quite happy with my service provider.

If, however, there is an issue in the future, I will think of shifting. Thanks to MNP, my number will remain the same. And that gives me a huge sense of comfort.

Click NEXT to read on. . .


Image: Arup Chakraborty.
Photographs: Dipak Chakraborty
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'MNP may not better telecom services'

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Ashish Bali
Journalist

Are you happy with the service of your telecom operator?

Yes I am quite happy with my service provider.

Do you think mobile number portability is a good step?

Yes. It is a great step forward. It will open new avenues in the technical world of India. The subscribers are sure to lap up the scheme.

Will it help in making telecom services better?

I don't think so.

While mobile number portability is likely to generate some healthy competition among the subscribers, it cannot just ensure better services provided by the telecom companies.

In the final count, the telecom companies only can ensure efficient services.

The onus rests on each telecom operator and not on any particular technological development.

Will you switch to a new operator?

No, not at the moment.

Why?

I am not too 'unhappy' with my service provider.

Also, I feel, the grass always looks greener on other side of the fence. A problem may arise with any mobile service provider.

And choosing one company over the other, therefore, is neither logical nor advisable.

Click NEXT to read on. . .


Image: Ashish Bali.
Photographs: Dipak Chakraborty
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'MNP a boon for the subscribers'

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Jayanta Chakraborty
Businessman

Are you happy with the service of your telecom operator?

Yes, absolutely.

Do you think mobile number portability is a good step?

Oh yes! It should have been done a long ago. It's just what the modern India needs.

Will it help in making telecom services better?

No I don't think so. Mobile number portability surely throws up a gamut of benefits for mobile subscribers but it just cannot ensure better services by the mobile operators.

Will you switch to a new operator?

Surely not at the moment.

Why?

I have no need to opt for a new operator at the moment.

Click NEXT to read on. . .


Image: Jayanta Chakraborty.
Photographs: Dipak Chakraborty
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'MNP okay but I am reluctant to change'

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Pankaj Ghosh
Builder

Are you happy with the service of your telecom operator?

Yes, I am totally satisfied with my service provider.

Do you think mobile number portability is a good step?

Yes, it's a revolutionary step forward. It's just what the present tech-savvy generation of  India needs.

Will it help in making telecom services better?

Yes, in a way it will. MNP will give birth to healthy competition and that in turn is sure to improve telecom services as a whole.

Will you switch to a new operator?

I will rather wait and watch at the moment before opting for a change.

Why?

I generally am little scared of any change. Hence I would prefer to give MNP some more time.

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Image: Pankaj Ghosh.
Photographs: Dipak Chakraborty
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'MNP will cut into monopoly business'

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Prabir Kumar Das
Electrical goods dealer

Are you happy with the service of your telecom operator?

Yes I am more or less happy with the service I am getting.

Do you think mobile number portability is a good step?

Of course! It will open new avenues for the entire mobile industry.

Will it help in making telecom services better?

Yes. MNP is sure to hit the monopoly of a few major telecom operators and provide some not-so-big companies with a chance to exhibit their feat.

Will you switch to a new operator?

No.

Why?

I don't feel any need to do so. However, I will definitely look for a change if necessary in future. Thanks to MNP, my number will remain the same.

Click NEXT to read on. . .


Image: Prabir Kumar Das.
Photographs: Dipak Chakraborty
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'MNP is a fantasy fulfilled'

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Santosh Adhikari
Grocery shop owner

Are you happy with the service of your telecom operator?

Yes I am quite satisfied with my mobile service provider.

Do you think mobile number portability is a good step?

Yes. It's a fantasy-come-true. MNP is, perhaps, one of the few best things that ever happened in India's telecom history.

Will it help in making telecom services better?

Yes. MNP is sure to hit the monopoly of a few major telecom operators and provide some not-so-big companies with a chance to exhibit their feat.

Will you switch to a new operator?

No.

Why?

At the moment, I am pretty happy.

But in case there are issues with my mobile company, I won't think twice before opting for a change.
And I owe this confidence to the new concept called MNP.

Click NEXT to read on. . .


Image: Santosh Adhikari.
Photographs: Dipak Chakraborty
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'MNP? Errrr. . . what's that?'

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Sushanta Ghosh
Vegetable vendor

Are you happy with the service of your telecom operator?

Yes I am quite happy with the mobile service that is offered by my provider.

Do you think mobile number portability is a good step?

Come again, what is that? I am hearing it for the first time. Never heard of it. Is it a scheme for the wealthy? Has to be.

Our government only thinks and acts for the rich.

Will it help in making telecom services better?

(Laughs). No idea.

Will you switch to a new operator?

No. Why on the earth should I?

Why?

I pinched a penny to buy a mobile handset and am struggling to keep it going. I don't want to opt for any change whatsoever.

Click NEXT to read on. . .


Image: Sushanta Ghosh.
Photographs: Dipak Chakraborty
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'MNP adds a new feather to India's cap'

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Tanmoy Bose
Private firm manager

Are you happy with the service of your telecom operator?

Yes I am very happy with the service provided by my mobile operator.

Do you think mobile number portability is a good step?

It's a big step into the future. MNP adds a new feather to India's telecom cap and is sure to open newer avenues.  

Will it help in making telecom services better?

Yes to some extent it will.

MNP means healthier competition and better services.

If telecom companies contest with each other to keep their clients happy, the latter stand to gain the most out of this tech movement.

Will you switch to a new operator?

No, though I would like to keep such an option open for the future.

Why?

I don't have any reason to complain as far as my current mobile service provider is concerned. However, in case I am ever dissatisfied, I won't hesitate to shift to another company. And thanks to MNP, my number would not change then.


Image: Tanmoy Bose.
Photographs: Dipak Chakraborty
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'MNP will keep telcos on their toes'

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Yajnaseni Chakraborty
Journalist

Are you happy with the service of your telecom operator?

To be honest, I am not entirely happy with the service, but not unhappy enough to change.

Do you think mobile number portability is a good step?

Yes, it is.

Will it help in making telecom services better?

It will certainly keep them on their toes.

The quality of service also depends on the available infrastructure, in which case everyone is the same

Will you switch to a new operator?

Not yet.

Why?

I believe in brand loyalty. Also, I am not entirely convinced that other operators are any better.

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Image: Yajnaseni Chakraborty.

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'MNP won't better services immediately'

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Abhijit Mukherjee
Corporate executive

Are you happy with the service of your telecom operator?

My mobile connectivity is a corporate one. However I am quite okay with my present operator

Do you think mobile number portability is a good step?

Yes it is specially so for the people who are on code division multiple access.

Will it help in making telecom services better?

It will definitely create competition and attractive schemes will be there. However, immediate betterment is not expected as it depends largely on the infrastructure overhaul.

Will you switch to a new operator?

I won't but I will suggest to my wife to move to global system for mobile communications operator as she is on CDMA.

Why?

GSM gives one a choice of wide variety of handsets.

Click NEXT to read on. . .


Image: Abhijit Mukherjee.

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'I am just fed up with BSNL'

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Aparna Mukherjee
Private firm employee

Are you happy with the service of your telecom operator? 
Not at all. At the moment I am availing of Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited's services.

Do you think mobile number portability is a good step?

It may be a good step but one needs to wait and watch till takes a concrete shape. One needs to weigh the offers and services by different telecom operators post MNP.

Will it help in making telecom services better?

Everything depends on the service providers. Mobile number portability is a technological progress no doubt but its success can be measured after a while.

Will you switch to a new operator?

In all probability, yes. I am just disgusted with BSNL's service.

If yes why?

BSNL has a very poor network coverage and the line gets disconnected more often than not. I am glad that I can now opt for a different service provider without having to change my number.


Image: Aparna Mukherjee.

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