The talks to pilot Mobile Number Portability (MNP) project to enable users to keep their phone numbers and change their mobile operating network has been a long discussed topic. MNP is now operational and has been in pilot phase for more than three weeks now.
Each mobile operator has a website portal for users to change their mobile operator to their own from their existing one. Hamrah Aval, Irancell and Rightel started marketing campaigns to absorb more users from their competitors. There are still no transparent reports as which mobile operating network has the most requests, but it is said that the statistics don’t indicate one specific winner in terms of number of users acquired in the pilot phase.
According to Farsnews, Vice Minister of Iran’s Ministry of Communications & Information explained the regulation structure on which the operators must proceed in the MNP process. In the first week of the pilot phase only 500 numbers were allowed to go through the MNP process, 750 in the second week and 1000 in the third. According to the vice minister, 6000 new requests came from users on the third week which 1000 of them were accepted to go through the process to change their mobile operators while keeping their existing number.
Competition will get fierce as the three mobile operators will launch more marketing campaigns in order to keep more users before MNP passes its pilot phase into full public launch. As talked before, MNP in Iran has forced operators to improve the quality of the services they provide. Rightel and Irancell have better chance of absorbing users when it comes to mobile internet and speed. However in terms of nation-wide cellular coverage and remote accessibility Hamrah-Aval still takes home the trophy. More reports will be announced when MNP moves from the pilot phase into public launch.