The much-awaited mobile number portability (MNP) service is now available for the country’s cell phone customers from today.
Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) Chairman (Acting) Md Jahurul Haque announced the opening of the service at a press conference this afternoon.
Now the mobile phone users can port to another operator retaining his/her number unchanged at 158, including the SIM replacement charges and VAT, and the process would take the highest 72 hours. If any user again wants to change operator, he/she has to wait 90 days.
On November 30 last year, the telecom regulator handed over the MNP license to the selected joint venture firm IBTCL.
The company, IBTCL, a joint venture of Infozillion BD Limited and Teletech DOO, Slovenia, was directed to provide the service within 180 days of getting the license.
About the delay, Mabroor Hossain earlier had said they completed their preparations related to the hardware and software several months ago.
Reluctant to blame anyone for the delay, he said, “MNOs, PSTNs, IGWs, ICXs, ANSs and other operators are involved with the process that is why huge technical complexities are involved with the system.”
According to the MNP guidelines, IBTCL had to port at least one per cent of the mobile phone subscribers through the service by May this year (2018).
More than 72 countries have MNP, which increases competition among operators in terms of service quality, said officials.