The Telecom Regulatory in India has finally rolled out mobile number portability in the country after an excruciatingly long wait of over two years. To be clear, the complete roll out is not expected to happen until the end of this year and the feature has only started to roll out from Rohtak, Haryana. Close to 10% of the current mobile phone subscribers are expected to switch to another carrier in the first year itself.
So if you are one of those looking forward to make a switch yourself, this is how you should go –
- Send an SMS to 1900 that reads PORT<space>mobile number from the mobile phone number you wish to port. For instance, if your phone number is 9876543210, type PORT 9876543210 and send it to 1900.
- You will now receive an SMS that contains your 8-digit Unique Porting Code (UPC). Make a note of this number.
- Approach the new carrier you wish to migrate to and ask for the prescribed form. You will need to make a mention of your UPC in this form.
That’s basically it. The new carrier will work on your application and the porting shall be completed within seven working days.
Fee & Minimum Stay Period
Before you start applying, there are a few points to note. Firstly, porting a number is not free and will require you to pay a fee of up to Rs. 19 to the new carrier. Given the cut-throat competition in the Indian market, expect the actual fee to be a lot lower if not zero in most cases. Secondly, once migrated to a new carrier, the subscriber cannot make another move for at least 90 days. So, be sure of your migration plans before approaching the new carrier. Also, the UPC is valid for a period of 16 days and so you have to apply to the new carrier before the UPC expires.
Balance Amount Transfer
For pre-paid customers, do note that migrating your number to a new carrier will mean that you shall be losing any prepaid balance that you have in your existing account. So remember to use up all your carrier minutes before you approach the new carrier.
Post-paid users need to remember that the MNP application could be rejected if you have not completely paid all your dues with the existing carrier. Make sure your last bill has been paid for.