TRAI, the Indian telecom regulatory body has come out with a set of recommendations to ensure availability of phone numbers for fixed and mobile connections in the coming years. Currently India has about 1.2 connections, and the new recommendations will ensure upto 7 billion connections.
The TRAI recommendations are for “Ensuring Adequate Numbering Resources for Fixed Line and Mobile Services”.
The key recommendation is the change in total digits in mobile numbers. TRAI has recommended switching mobile numbers from 10 to 11 digits with an addition of a zero for existing numbers when to be called from a fixed line connection.
New mobile numbers will start with different digits in the upcoming days. The latest recommendations by TRAI are based on the inputs received at an Open House Discussion (OHD) from January.
11 Digit Phone Number: TRAI Recommendations
Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) released the following recommendations.
11 Digit Mobile Numbers
TRAI will replace 10-digit mobile numbers with 11-digit phone numbers to ensure availability for more connections. Using 11 digits as mobile numbers will also let providers use ‘9’ as the first digit of the mobile number for a total capacity of 10 billion numbers.
7 Billion Connections To Be Available
Using the 11 digit phone number policy, this can help provide connections to 7 billion people. According to TRAI, after 70 percent utilisation, the new policy would be enough till India has 7 billion connections and thus recommended using 11-digit mobile numbers in the country.
‘0’ As Prefix For Mobile Numbers
TRAI also has recommended using ‘0’ as a prefix for mobile numbers. This has to be used while calling from a fixed line connection. Though, already the inter-state mobile calls from a landline connection can be accessed adding ‘0′ as the prefix before the 10 digit mobile phone number.
Different Prefix Numbers For Different Areas
To call a mobile number in any particular service area from a landline or fixed network, users will have to dial prefix ‘0’ before the mobile number. The free sub-levels in levels ‘2’, ‘3’, ‘4’, and ‘6’ can also be used for mobile numbers.
Numbers For Dongles
The telecom regulatory body also recommended shifting mobile numbers for dongles specifically. The mobile numbers used for dongles could range from 10 digits to 13 digits. Currently dongles and data cards have the same 10-digit numbering scheme as mobile phone numbers.
National Numbering Plan (NNP)
Under the new set of recommendations, TRAI has suggested a new National Numbering Plan (NNP), which is said to be issued at the earliest. TRAI confirmed that the consolidated list of short codes will be updated every year with the changes made.
India Has 1.2 Billion Connections
Currently India has 1.2 billion connections as TRAI recommended. The regulatory body has mentioned that India already has around 1.2 billion telephone numbers. That sums up for a tele-density of 87.47 percent given the total population of India. Both fixed and mobile subscribers are still growing rapidly.