30,493 telecom subscribers swapped network in 2022 – Report
The number of telecommunication subscribers that changed their mobile network providers rose by 171.05 per cent to 30,493 in 2022.
Data obtained from the Nigerian Communications Commission’s portal indicated that 19,243 more telecom subscribers changed their service providers in 2022, compared to the 11,250 who ported to other networks in the previous year.
While porting services witnessed growth in 2022, it has yet to hit its pre-SIM-NIN heights.
In December 2020, the NCC mandated telcos to suspend the sales, registration, and activation of new SIM cards as part of its efforts to ramp up SIM-NIN activities.
This hindered SIM porting activities.
As of the end of 2020, 187,171 telecom subscribers switched their network providers.
In the first six months of 2021, porting services recorded zero activities.
In the period under review, 9mobile lost the most subscribers with 17,978 subscribers moving away from the network to others.
Airtel lost 7,119 subscribers, while Globacom and MTN lost 2,831 and lost 2,565 subscribers respectively.
Porting allows subscribers to change their mobile network provider while retaining their number. Subscribers change their network providers because of poor service quality offerings by their original service providers.
Porting service was launched in April 2013 by the NCC.
The NCC during the launch of the porting service explained, “In furtherance of its efforts to promote competition, improve quality of service and ensure that consumers continue to enjoy a good experience on the mobile networks, the NCC launched mobile number portability service for GSM subscribers in April 2013.
“The MNP enables consumers to switch networks without losing their cellular phone numbers.”
The commission added that MNP works on the Mobile Subscriber’s ISDN Number and not the International Subscriber’s Mobile Identity, meaning all MSISDN-based services like SMS, MMS, voice calls, and other prepaid services are affected once a subscriber port.
At inception, porting licences were granted to a consortium of three companies (Interconnect Limited, Saab Grinteck and Telecordia) to facilitate the service as the Number Portability Clearing House for service.
There are no restrictions as to the number of times a subscriber can port, although there is a 45-day restriction time between each porting.
In an earlier, The PUNCH report, the President of the National Association of Telecoms Subscribers, Adeolu Ogunbanjo, said mobile number portability was a crucial service in the industry, irrespective of the frequency of utilisation by subscribers.
Explaining why subscribers port, he said, “Porting occurs when a subscriber is dissatisfied with a particular network or when you are relocating to another place. A particular network you are using in your former location may not have good signal strength in your new location.”