Mobile No Portability in India

Telcos launch special plans to woo MNP customers




Jan 20 (PTI) Following the launch of mobile number portability (MNP), which lets people switch service providers without having to change their phone numbers, telecom operators like BSNL and MTS today announced various schemes to woo subscribers of other companies.

State-owned BSNL will provide free 2G and 3G connections, besides free talktime to MNP customers migrating to BSNL.

"No port in charges shall be levied to customers moving to BSNL. Besides this, the SIM card for 2G/3G shall be provided free of cost, along with an additional talk value of Rs 100 for prepaid customers," BSNL said in a statement.

Subscribers will also get 50 per cent rebate on the first month charges along with free 5 GB GPRS/3G usage for a month.

MNP has not only ushered in fresh competition among GSM operators, but between GSM and CDMA operators as well.

Sistema Shyam Teleservices Ltd (SSTL), which offers CDMA services under MTS brand name, said it will offer a range of smartphones through easy monthly instalment (EMI) options, along with free talktime.

Besides, CDMA customers switching to MTS would be offered half paisa per second tariff for all local calls valid for three months on buying the first recharge coupon of Rs 13.

Apart from wooing new customers, telcos are also launching innovative schemes to retain existing customers.

Loop Mobile, which operates in Mumbai, has launched a new offer under which its subscribers will get minimum 0.50 paise per minute for every call drop in Mumbai and Thane.

Customers will have to pay a maximum of Rs 19 to their existing operators to change their networks and new operators have the option to either waive the fee or reduce it.

However, a consumer will have to remain with one operator for a minimum of three months, for availing the MNP service.

Uninor, the JV company between Norwegian firm Telenor and Unitech, said the company will go with its Dynamic Pricing scheme to attract pre-paid subscribers to its network.

"The customer can keep the same number but start getting up to 60 per cent discounts on all the calls that is a powerful proposition,"Uninor said in a statement.

The Department of Telecommunications has said the entire process of switching operators will take a maximum of seven days and subscribers may face disruption of services for about two hours during that period.

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