… 9Mobile emerges subscribers’ favourite
… MTN, Glo, Airtel lost customers
Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) in Nigeria have exchanged among themselves a total of 82,634 subscribers during the second quarter of the year from April through May to June.
The exchange transactions occurred through mobile number portability (MNP), one of initiatives of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) to broaden subscribers’ options and access to good telecoms services.
Latest statistics plucked from the telecoms industry regulator, the NCC, showed that while 42,075 were incoming porting, another 40,559 were outgoing porting activities during the Q2 period.
Outward or outgoing porting means the numbers ported to another service provider’s network from the original telecoms operator of a telephone line, while according to NCC definition, inporting describes numbers received by operators on their networks from their competitors.
The NCC had introduced the MNP initiative seven years ago to afford users the flexibility and freedom to choose which network to use in the next 45 days while they keep their original telephone numbers even as they use it to access services on various networks of different operators.
The latest data indicated a rebound in porting activities in June after the lull recorded in April and May as a result of lockdown and interstate movement restrictions that limited nationwide movements among Nigerians.
While importing and outporting stood at 7,148 and 6,097 respectively in April; 11,868 and 11,637 in May, the figures went up significantly in June as 23,059 inward and 22,825 outward portings were recorded respectively.
The observed shifts in the porting activities reflected the more eased lockdown and gradual reactivation of the economy that characterised the month of June, during which Nigerians were able to move partially across the country, and thus, had reasons to switch from one network to another in search of better quality of service or attractive tariffs and bonus offers.
Further analysis of the figures showed that within the period under review, ironically, only 9Mobile which is the smallest MNO was able to snatch subscribers from other operators while MTN, Airtel and Globacom lost in the game.
While 9Mobile received 21,097 subscribers hitherto belonging to MTN, Airtel and Globacom, only 4,780 of it’s own subscribers vacated its network to join the networks of three bigger operators.
On the flip side, Globacom emerged the biggest loser. While it welcomed 658 telephone users from other operators, 12,108 of its original subscribers left the indigenous network in search of greener offers.
Airtel trailed with a record of 14,912 inporting against 17,570 outward porting activities while MTN Nigeria followed by receiving 5,408 from other operators while 6,098 of its own subscribers said their goodbye to use their MTN subscriber’s identity module (SIM) cards to access telecoms services on the networks of other service providers.
Umar Danbatta, the executive vice chairman of the NCC had urged operators that while they execute MNP, they must comply with the conditions for Emergency Repatriation and Return to Block Operator in line with the provisions of the MNP business rules, as well as consequences for noncompliance.
“In view of the relative low amount of porting transactions, the commission will carry out robust awareness campaigns to enlighten consumers on the availability of Mobile Number Portability Scheme,” he had stated.