Sci & Tech

Iran Mobile Number Portability Services Begin

Iran Mobile Number Portability Services BeginIran Mobile Number Portability Services Begin

The pilot phase of Mobile Number Portability services has started in Iran, said the deputy minister of communications and information technology.

MNP enables cellphone users to retain their numbers while changing from one mobile network operator to another

“During the pilot phase, which will last for a month, we hope to closely monitor and assess the relevant conditions and variables,” Ali Asghar Amidian, who is also the head of Communications Regulatory Authority, said, ICTPRESS reported.

“In this period, the performance of operators will constantly be evaluated and all actions will be monitored at the portability center of CRA,” he said.

Amidian added that during the pilot phase, Iran’s mobile phone operators will be offering the service to maximum 500 users per day.

If the maximum number is filled in one day, applicants will be asked to pursue their request the next day.

Minister of Communications and Information Technology Mahmoud Vaezi had previously said that the service will be launched by June 20. It has now been launched after about a month’s delay.

Currently, three major mobile phone operators are delivering services in Iran, namely Mobile Telecommunications Company of Iran (MCI) or Hamrah-e-Aval, MTN Irancell and RighTel.

To activate the service, applicants can refer to the customer service offices of the operators or via the operators’ websites. All three operators have recently added a section to their websites through which users can file requests for MNP activation.

In a statement on its website, MCI has said that once a user completes the application process, it will take three to five days before their number is transferred.

Irancell has prepared an info-graphic explaining the activation process and announced that users will not be charged for transferring their number but will have to pay 30,000 rials ($0.8) for a new SIM card.

The CRA had previously said users will be charged 5,000 rials ($0.15) for using Mobile Number Portability.

Amidian also said that some limitations, including the cap on the number of users allowed, will gradually be lifted and the program will eventually be fully launched on a commercial scale.

“The pilot phase creates an opportunity for the operators to ensure their services are going according to plan,” he said, adding that this will help them improve services by the time of the full launch.

In May, CRA officially communicated the regulations that must be observed by the operators for offering MNP services.

The statement said that for each number ported, the receiving operator should pay 100,000 rials ($3) to the original operator from which the number is ported.

CRA’s statement said financial issues concerning MNP services must be settled between the operators once every three months. The statement also obliges them to report to CRA all issues regarding this service once every six months.

The report must include all key information such as the number of subscribers using the services and number of requests rejected along with the reasons.