MNP- A Complete Guide to Mobile Number Portability

What is MNP?

Before you move on to understanding what is MNP, let’s look at a few numbers-

  • In May 2019, there were around 4.18 million subscribers who had submitted their applications for Mobile Number Portability (MNP)
  • The MNP applications surged from April 2019 at 432.97 million to 437.15 million by the end of May 2019
  • In the month of May 2019, there were over 989.60 million active wireless subscribers
  • In the year 2020, there were around 1169.44 (wireless + wireline) million telecom subscribers
  • During the month of April 2020, 0.90 million subscribers opted for Mobile Number Portability (MNP). The MNP applications increased from 487.33 million to 488.23 million in April 2020

These numbers highlight the shift of telecom users from their existing operators to new operators, owing to multiple reasons such as unsatisfactory services, higher tariff packs, poor connectivity from their existing operators.

Let’s understand the reasons that lie behind the growing popularity of MNP, the steps to port the mobile number, and the documents required to do so.

What is MNP?

Full-formed as Mobile Number Portability, MNP allows users to change their telecom operators without changing their existing mobile number. It is important to note that a network switch from one operator to another operator does not impact the network reliability but rather offers improved network coverage service, economical tariff packs, attractive promotional packs, and others to a user.

Benefits of MNP

The introduction of MNP, worked as a reason to push various telecom operators to serve the best telecom services to their users. Users, on the other hand, opted for MNP due to some common reasons listed below-

  • New subscribers are given attractive telecom services
  • Users can switch operator free of cost
  • There is no need to change the mobile number when you change the operator
  • Subscribers will get a new SIM card in the required size
  • The subscriber gets complete flexibility to change plan from prepaid to postpaid and vice versa
  • Existing service provider might try to offer better services and deals

Step by Step Process for Mobile Number Portability

If you wish to switch from your existing telecom operator to a new one, follow these steps-

Step 1– Send an SMS to 1900 in the following format – PORT <9811981100> to 1900. Do not add any prefix like +91 or 0 and ensure to send the SMS from the same mobile number you want to switch from

Step 2– After successfully sending the SMS, you will receive an 8-digit UPC (Unique Porting Number) from your existing mobile operator. UPC expires within 4 days, except in the areas of Jammu & Kashmir, North East, Assam where it remains valid for 30 days. Thus, it is mandatory to send the application t to the new operator or within 4 days

Step 3– Now, connect with your new service provider or visit their office/store. Here at this stage, you will be required to provide the 8-digit UPC number that you’d have received along with the supporting documents

Step 4– At this stage, the new operator will send an application to the old operator to check if there are any dues left or any issues associated with your number. Once the verification process gets completed, the old operator will share the MNP application’s rejection/approval status with the new operator

Step 5– The new operator will share the MNP application status with you within 7 days

Step 6– Approval of the MNP application will make the new operator provide you with the time and date for MNP via SMS

Step 7– After the completion of MNP formalities, you will receive a confirmation message from the new operator to start using its services

Documents Required for Mobile Number Portability

For number portability, you must submit the following documents to the new operator-

  • Address proof copy
  • Customer Agreement Form with UPC details
  • ID proof
  • Last paid bill copy of the current service provider (for postpaid subscribers)

Reasons for the Rejection of MNP Application

An MNP application can be rejected under the following circumstances-

  • If there is a mobile bill yet to be paid
  • If the subscriber hasn’t used 90 days of service from the old operator
  • If the mobile number is under court’s jurisdiction
  • If the telecom operator does not serve in the subscriber’s area, region, or city
  • If the UPC does not match
  • If the mobile number is under contractual obligation

Things to Remember about Mobile Number Portability

Now that you know some possible reasons behind a rejected MNP application, it is important to be aware of these basic things before you submit the MNP application-

  • Only mobile phone numbers can be ported
  • One can port the mobile number only within the existing telephone circle
  • Subscribers can port from prepaid to postpaid or postpaid to prepaid only after complete bill payment
  • You can cancel an MNP application by sending a ‘CANCEL’ SMS to 1900, but only before the submission of UPC
  • You need to use at least 90 days of the old operator’s service before you submit a fresh MNP application
  • In case of any doubts, it is good to connect with both the operators
  • Submit the UPC before it expires
Can I get my UPC code again after losing it?
Yes, you can get your UPC code again by sending a ‘PORT’ SMS to 1900.
How long does it take to complete Mobile Number Portability?
Officially, it takes around 4 working days for the completion of Mobile Number Portability.
How to withdraw a number porting application?
Cancel the MNP application by sending an SMS in the following format- ‘CANCEL’ ’10-digit mobile number’ to 1900.
For how many days the UPC remains valid?
The UPC remains valid for 4 days except for the areas like North East, Assam, Jammu & Kashmir where it remains valid for 30 days.
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