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MNP Boards India's Delay Train Again

10:50 AM -- Don't hold your breath for the arrival of mobile number portability (MNP) services in India -- the long-awaited introduction is unlikely to meet its latest deadline of October 31, according to DNA.

This isn't the first time the introduction of MNP has been delayed: In fact, it was initially planned for the first half of 2009. (See MNP Delayed Again.)

There are two reasons for the delay. First, MNP Interconnection Telecom Solutions India Pvt. , the joint venture responsible for the implementation of MNP, is still waiting for the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance it requires because US vendor Telcordia Technologies Inc. holds a 74 percent stake. (See AsiaWatch: India Preps Number Portability.)

The Telcordia venture was set to introduce MNP services in India's South and Eastern regions, while Syniverse Technologies LLC is responsible for the North and West regions.

Earlier this year, India's Home Ministry objected to MNP Interconnection being involved in the provision of number portability services. The Ministry cited security concerns because the joint venture is also offering MNP services in Pakistan. (See Syniverse Wins in India.)

Second, some unidentified operators have said their back-office systems won't be ready to facilitate MNP services by that deadline.

As things stand, it might be some time before MNP is available -- only then will it be possible to measure its impact in terms of customer churn from one operator to another. (See Will Churn Burn India's Mobile Operators?.)

— Gagandeep Kaur, India Editor, Light Reading

Gagandeep Kaur 12/5/2012 | 4:20:19 PM
re: MNP Boards India's Delay Train Again

Now MNP is likely to be launched next month...in the phase I, it is going to be launched in 11 circles in the North and Western part of India and later will be rolled out in the entire country...analysts predict a churn of only 4-5%. However maximum churn of subscribers is likely from CDMA subscribers to GSM leading to problem for MTS (the other two CDMA service providers--Tata and Reliance offer GSM as well)...

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