Posts filed under ‘MNP’
Ghana’s Minister-Nominee for Communications Haruna Iddrisu said yesterday he would forge ahead quickly with plans to usher in mobile number portability (MNP) to improve consumer choice and drive down prices. Iddrisu reportedly made the promise when he was being vetted by the Parliamentary Appointments Committee for the position of Minister of Communications. ‘It is time for the regulation regime to make it possible for mobile phone users to be able to migrate from one network to the other with the whole of the phone numbers, including the network code and I think that it is about time the National Communications Authority (NCA) brought MNP on,’ he said.
In a separate story, Ghana Telecom (GT) says its mobile arm GT-OneTouch will install SIM phones in 250 rural communities across the country by July 2009. GT says its new majority shareholder Vodafone has spent the last six months investing heavily in its networks, services and staff to improve telecoms services in the country.
Turkcell, Turkey’s largest mobile operator in terms of subscribers, has reported that it attracted 650,000 net new customers in the final three months of 2008, taking its total user base to 37 million. Rival operator Avea said on Friday that it had gained 244,000 net new subscribers since the implementation of mobile number portability (MNP) in mid-November, meaning that the country’s other cellco, Vodafone, has been the big loser since MNP was introduced; it saw customer numbers fall from 17.36 million at end-September to 16.72 million three months later.
Turk Telekom announced, in a statement to the Istanbul Stock Exchange, that an investment mandate decision had been agreed at a board meeting earlier this week, reports Reuters. ‘The decision was reached for the extraordinary general meeting… to mandate the management board for any kind of company purchases for up to USD1 billion within 2009,’ the company said. The extraordinary general assembly is scheduled to meet on 25 February. Although the operator did not reveal any particular acquisition targets, the company did submit a preliminary, non-binding bid for the Macedonian wireless operator Cosmofon last month.
In other news, Turk Telekom’s wireless subsidiary Avea announced this week that it had gained a net 244,000 subscribers since number portability was introduced in Turkey. Science Technologies and Communication Council (BTK) President Tayfun Acarer announced that 1.3 million subscribers have attempted to take advantage of number portability, which requires cellcos to allow customers to keep their phone numbers when switching to a different service provider, since it was introduced on 10 November 2008.
Ireland’s telecoms regulator, the Commission for Communications Regulation (ComReg), has slashed wholesale prices operators charge one another for switching either a mobile phone or fixed line to a new service provider. SiliconRepublic reports that ComReg’s decision will cut 90% off the cost of wholesale mobile porting charges and 70% for a wholesale fixed line change in which the end user retains their existing number. New wholesale number portability (NP) rates – which have to be provided under law by both fixed and mobile operators – will be levied at a maximum EUR2.05 (USD2.62) for porting a cellular number and EUR4.02 for a corresponding landline switch.
ComReg has announced additional changes to other wholesale fixed line NP charging, including a new maximum EUR3.50 fee for Geographic Number Portability (GNP) in relation to Unbundled Local Metallic Path (ULMP) provisioning, and a maximum charge of EUR5.74 for Non-Geographic Number Portability (NGNP).
The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has begun the process to introduce mobile number portability (MNP), inviting bids from interested companies. The DoT has stated that it is looking for companies with previous experience in implementing MNP systems, and the submission deadline has been set as 6 February 2009. A list of pre-qualified bidders will be released on 16 February, with selected companies then asked to present their plans for rollout on 23 and 24 February. The winner will be announced on 5 March. The regulator has reiterated that the charge for the service will be decided by the Telecoms Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI). The TRAI had set a charge of between INR200 (USD4.07) and INR300 (USD6.10) in 2006, but it is understood that a new fee will be decided before the service is launched. The government had initially expected MNP to be introduced in Delhi, Mumbai, Calcutta and Chennai by the end of 2008. If the new deadlines are met as planned it is expected that the service may be introduced within the first half of 2009.