Mobile Number Portability - a boon or bane?

Mobile companies
New Delhi, Jan 20: Finally, Mobile Number Portability (MNP) has been introduced in India on Thursday, Jan 20. With this facility, now mobile users can switch to one tele-operator to another one without changing the previous mobile number.

Minute details of MNP in India

Several mobile operators such as Vodafone, Airtel, Uninor, Idea Cellular, Tata Docomo, MTS have fastened their seat belts to gear up their sales and revenues with the help of mobile number portability.

But several experts stated, "The implementation of MNP will hit the operating margins of service providers and those with deeper pockets would be better placed to cope up (with the new scenario)."

"The nation wide implementation will increase churn of customers, shoot-up the customer acquisition and retention and lower the ARPUs (average revenue per user) as competitive tariff plans will have to be offered," experts added.

According to them, on service quality, operators will have to focus on better customer care and network coverage while differentiated services like 3G can also swing customers towards a particular operator.

However, mobile users are advised to think twice before switching to another tele operators as surveys have revealed that the net effect of number portability is practically negligible.

Consumers are suggested to change operators better based on a perception of improvement rather than a real difference.

Another question still remains - whether the mobile number portability (MNP) in India will come out as a blessing or a curse.

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