Friday, September 04, 2015

Mixed Experiences with MNP and N-MNP in India

Finally we have two levels of Number Portability in India now.

  1. January 11 2011 (Regional Mobile Number Portability (referred as MNP))
  2. July 3 2015 (National Mobile Number Portability (referred as NMNP))

Around the first quarter of 2014, I had the opportunity to taste the fruits of MNP from Vodafone (Maharashtra & Goa) to Airtel (Maharashtra & Goa) . The reasons for this switch are:

  1. Very local dialects of Vodafone making it uncomfortable talking with them.
  2. Too much hidden charges and fine prints
  3. Bad network coverage in the area I was living (Dehu Road, Talwade)

And I always believe in not to put all the eggs in the same basket. And for some reason I had a few of the SIMs from Chennai BSNL Network itself in 2015. So I implemented a simple method to divestiture into other networks.

  1. Ported one of my Chennai BSNL number into Vodafone Chennai (June 2015) -- This was also necessary because of not-so-good customer support and coverage for my frequently used number. 
  2. Ported one of my Chennai BSNL number into Aircel Chennai (June 2015) -- This SIM I was predominantly using for data card. Now that I am using internet on the mobile, I felt that the number which almost went inactive could be rejuvenated. 

There were a couple of issues with Vodafone too. Vodafone does not send properly the port confirmation, port-in-time messages. So I thought as a backup I would have a port-in to Idea Cellular also. Idea is still bad. No porting SMSes are sent at all.

And with July 3 2015 launch of NMNP, I initiated the following steps:

  1. Moved my Airtel (M&G) number into Airtel (Chennai) to ensure it does not anymore roam for me.
  2. Moved my BSNL (M&G) number into BSNL (Chennai) to ensure it does not anymore roam for me.

However Airtel Roaming was a rough ride. No sooner the number was ported to Chennai, I had a number of issues. A few of them are hereunder:

  1. Call routing were too much erroneous or incomplete
  2. SMS Delivery Reports not getting received (despite opting on the device)
  3. SMS erratically delivered or mis-delivered
  4. SMS to special numbers like 1909, 121 etc never sent

As usual the customer care was singing lullaby and duet for two to three weeks. With competant telecom administrations slamming an escalation on the issue, Airtel then engaged its MNP implementation vendors to look into the issue and during the first week of August there was light at the end of tunnel. 

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