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India Mobile Number Portability - Complete Guide

After years of waiting, Mobile Number Portability has arrived in India. The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has issued a draft of regulations for introduction of mobile number portability (MNP) in the country. If you are not aware of Mobile Number Portability, it allows subscribers to retain their existing telephone number when they switch from one access service provider to another access service provider irrespective of mobile technology or from one technology to another technology on the same or any other access service provider.

So lets say you are currently using Reliance CDMA mobile with a phone number 9332221110. You are tired of your CDMA phones and want to go with some cool GSM phones but those phones are not offered by Reliance GSM. So you can switch to lets say Vodafone. You can still keep your number 9332221110.

Mobile Number portability will be implemented first in Delhi, Mumbai, Maharashtra & Gujarat Service Areas of Zone-1 and Kolkata, Tamil Nadu (including Chennai, AP and Karnataka) by Sept 20th 2009 and the rest of the country will follow the implementation by March 30th 2010.

Mobile Number Portability is a good feature but comes with the cost. The per port transaction fees will be charged to the customer by the service provider which would be t least Rs 250-400.  Being a customer, you should approach the new operator to port your existing number. SO if you are with Airtel and want to switch to IDEA mobile, you need to go to IDEA mobile to ask for your number portability.

Mobile number portability would also work for Indian pre-paid mobile phone connections. In this case, the balance in the existing pre-paid card would be exhausted, or would be lost.

Donor operator will not be able to use the ported out number till it is in use by the ported subscriber. After the surrendering of number by ported subscriber, the number will revert back to the original donor operator. Mobile subscriber shall be eligible to make a request for "porting" (changing) his mobile number upon expiry of a period of ninety days from the date of activation of his present mobile connection.

The process of transferring a mobile number from one provider to another would involve a break in service when a number is detached from one provider and added to another. TRAI has said that this period should not be more than two hours.

The recipient operator, within five days of receiving a written request, has to carry out subscriber verification according to the guidelines for acquiring a new user. Upon verification, the request is to be forwarded to the donor operator (to whose network such mobile subscriber number currently belongs) for seeking its clearance.

Upon receipt of the porting request, the donor operator shall verify and communicate the details to the MNP service provider within two working days.

Updates: The Government on Thursday said that the implementation of Mobile Number Portability (MNP) has been put off to March 31. The Ministry of Communications had to push back the date after operators said that they were not ready with their network.

Updates:

List of Mobile Operators and Dates when it will be implemented :

Nov 8th -: Bharti Airtel, Videocon, Loop and Mobile

Nov 11th –: Aircel, Uninor, Reliance GSM ( Rcom) and Tata Docomo

Nov 14th-: BSNL ,MTS, Idea Cellular and  BSNL CDMA

Nov 17th-: Vodafone Essar, Reliance Mobile (CDMA) and Tata indicom.