Port Number: Details on Mobile Number Portability in India

To port number, commonly termed as Mobile Number Portability is an option that enables a mobile user to switch from one provider to the other, regardless of location (e.g., Mumbai to Chennai). If a customer is dissatisfied with his/her existing operator’s services, they can transfer their mobile number to any other provider of their choosing.
Last updated in: April 2022

In this article, we have compiled all the necessary information related to port number. For more information on mobile and broadband plans, click here.

What does it mean to port number?

Mobile Number Portability (MNP) or to port number refers to the process which enables you to switch from one mobile carrier to another mobile carrier without changing the mobile number. Number Portability allows customers to switch network operators while keeping their phone numbers in layman’s terms.

Let’s assume you have the phone number 911000-XXXXX and use Jio as your mobile network provider. With the help of Mobile Network Portability, you can change your mobile network provider to Airtel, Vi, or any other service provider.

 

What is meant by porting a number?

Porting a number is the act of transporting your existing mobile network provider to another mobile network provider.

 

When was MNP launched in India?

MNP was launched in India in January 2011 by the then-Prime Minister, Mr Manmohan Singh. It was launched by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) as several users were not happy with the existing service of the providers.

 

What types of number portability exist?

Number Portability is of three types which are as follows:

  1. Operator portability:

    It is the flexibility of a customer to keep an old telephone number in the same service region even if they switch their mobile service provider.

  2. Location portability:

    Location portability refers to a user’s ability to keep a current phone number when moving from one geographical place. The transfer of a geographical number from one place to another is called location portability.

  3. Service portability:

    Service portability refers to a user’s ability to keep their current phone number while switching from one provider to another, from landline to mobile networks.

 

Who can opt to port mobile number?

Prepaid and postpaid telecom customers can transfer their phone numbers. But, this is only feasible once the user has utilised the current mobile service provider’s service for at least 90 days.

 

What are the eligibility criteria for a porting request?

The eligibility criteria to port number are as follows:

  • If the user has a postpaid connection, the customer must have cleared all the existing dues of the current telecommunication service provider by the usual billing cycle.
  • The user has used the current operator’s network for at least 90 days.
  • A request to alter a mobile phone number holder is not there.
  • The user must have zero outstanding legal contracts to discontinue the service of the current provider.
  • The court of law has put a hold on transferring a mobile number.
  • The mobile number requested to be migrated is not in the middle of a legal dispute.

 

How to identify if you can port your number?

Everyone who meets all the conditions mentioned above is eligible for porting.

 

What are the grounds for the rejection of the Porting Request?

An application to port number can be denied in the following situations:

  • If you have to pay the mobile phone bill.
  • If the user has not utilised the previous operator’s service for 90 days.
  • If the cellphone number is under the court’s jurisdiction.
  • If the telecom operator does not serve the user’s territory, province, or town.
  • If the Unique Porting Request (UPC) does not correspond.
  • If a contract bounds the cellphone number.
  • If the request is not supported by a proper authorization letter provided by the corporation in case of a business mobile number.

 

Can I carry forward my prepaid balance to my new connection?

Unfortunately, telecom companies do not allow you to transfer your balance to another service provider under the process of number portability.

 

Can I continue to use my current prepaid balance after porting my phone number?

No, you cannot use your existing prepaid amount once you port your number. At the same time, if you port from the prepaid plan to the postpaid plan, your balance will be transferred.

 

How to Port Mobile Number Operators?

Follow these procedures if you want to move from your current telecommunication company to a new one:

  • Send an SMS with the text ‘PORT’ to 1900. Never include prefixes such as +91 or 0 and deliver the SMS from the same mobile phone number you wish to transfer.
  • Upon successfully delivering the SMS, your current mobile provider will provide you with an 8-digit Unique Porting Number.
  • Contact your new service provider or go to their workplace. At this point, you must supply the 8-digit UPC number which you got together with the accompanying documentation.
  • At this point, the new company will submit a request to the previous operator to see whether there are any outstanding balances or difficulties with your number. When the validation procedure is finished, the current operator will inform the new operator of the rejection/approval decision of the MNP application.
  • After seven days, the new operator shall notify you of the status of your MNP application.
  • Upon confirmation of the MNP request, the new operator will give you the timings for MNP via email.

Last but not the least…

Once the requirements to port number are completed, you will receive a final message from the new operator allowing you to begin utilising the services.

What is the procedure to port number for a prepaid connection?

The procedure of number porting for a prepaid connection is the same as mentioned in the above process. Once the porting process is complete, you can either recharge your SIM with the help of a wallet or any service provider.

 

What is the procedure to Port Number for a postpaid connection?

The procedure to port number for a postpaid connection is the same as mentioned in the above process. Once the process is complete, you need to recharge your phone with a suitable mobile plan of your need.

 

What documentation is necessary for porting a mobile number?

You must provide the documents listed below during the time of porting your number:

  • Address proof copy
  • Customer Agreement Form with UPC details
  • ID proof
  • If you are a postpaid customer, you must provide the new operator with a copy of your current service provider’s most recent paid bill.

How can I obtain the unique porting code online?

You can get your Unique Porting Code by texting “PORT” followed by a space and then your mobile number to 1900.

 

What are the requirements for getting a Unique Porting Request (UPC)?

The eligibility criteria for receiving a Unique Porting Request is as follows:

  • If the user has a postpaid connection, the customer must have cleared all the existing dues of the current telecommunication service provider under the usual billing cycle.
  • The user has used the current operator’s network for at least 90 days.
  • A request to alter a mobile phone number holder is not there.
  • The user has zero outstanding legal contracts to meet the subscription agreement’s departure clause.
  • The court of law has put a hold on transferring a mobile number.
  • The mobile number requested to be migrated is not in the middle of a legal dispute.

 

What is the validity period of UPC?

UPC will be valid for four days in all locations apart from Jammu and Kashmir, Assam, and the North East, where UPC is valid for 30 days.

 

How to cancel a number portability request?

You can cancel your MNP application by texting “CANCEL” followed by a space and then your mobile number to 1900.
 
Multiple SIM cards and a pin on a surface

 

How much time does it take to port the phone number?

It will take three working days to port to some other operator in the same circle or LSA. In order to transfer to another LSA, the MNP operation takes five business days. However, in the service areas of Jammu and Kashmir, Assam, and the North East, the porting operation will take 15 business days.

 

For how long will your phone number be inactive in case of porting?

Your previous SIM card will be disabled within one hour after the transfer time, and your new SIM card will be enabled after two hours of the indicated porting time.

 

Is the subscriber notified about the porting process?

Yes, the user will be notified via SMS at each step of the porting process, including the filing of the porting request, port rejection, porting timetable, disconnection time by the operator, and SIM reactivation by the new operator/RO.

How to check mobile number portability status?

To check the mobile number portability status, you must contact your current provider. Users must supply the UPC after the connection is established, and Customer Care will keep you updated on the progress over the call.

 

What are the fees associated with porting a cell phone number?

The porting fees vary from one service provider to another. For instance, Airtel does not charge any porting fees, while Jio charges ₹6.46. The maximum charge fixed by TRAI a company can charge is ₹6.46.

 

What is the cost to port number?

The user can be charged up to ₹6.46. The charges charged by various provider are as follows:


Cost of MNP
Service Provider Charges
Airtel Logo ₹0
Jio Logo ₹6.46
Vi Logo ₹0


Will there be any changes to port my mobile number?

Yes, there can be charges if prompted by the operator.

 

How much does it cost to port to Airtel Postpaid?

In order to port number to Airtel postpaid is completely free, as there are no enrollment fees or security deposits.

 

How much do I pay to switch to Jio?

The receiver operator may need you to pay a porting fee to Jio of up to ₹19.

 

How much do I pay to switch to BSNL?

BSNL provides unrestricted portability and the service is free of charge.

 

What to know before porting your number?

You should know the following things before porting:

  • Mobile phone numbers are the only ones that can be transferred.
  • Only inside the existing phone circle may a mobile number be ported.
  • Users can only move from prepaid to postpaid or postpaid to prepaid when they have paid their whole bill.
  • Before the UPC expires, submit it.

How often can you port your phone number?

There is no set limit for porting your mobile number, but you can switch your operator after 90 days from the date of commencement of your mobile network or the date of the last porting of your cell phone number, whichever is later.

 

Can you port back to your old mobile operator?

Yes, if you use a minimum of three-month services from the new operator, you may transfer back to the previous provider’s network.

 

Duration required to port number for the second time?

Porting to another operator within the same circle or LSA will take three working days. The MNP procedure takes five business days in porting to some other LSA. But, the porting procedure would take 15 business days in Jammu and Kashmir, Assam, and the North East service areas.

 

What is local number portability?

Local Number Portability (LNP) allows end customers to preserve their mobile number while changing telecoms service providers. It enables consumers to preserve their existing landline number while switching to their local exchange provider.

 

How many states/regions offer mobile portability?

All states and regions in the country offer mobile portability services.

 

Which telecom providers offer a service to port number?

All service providers in all the telecom circles offer number portability. Top service providers such as Airtel, Vodafone-Idea (Vi), Jio and/or BSNL, all of them market MNP on their websites, social media and in retail outlets as well. Some have been offering seamless porting services and plans to attract customers.

 

Comparison of number portability services offered by telecom companies

We have listed down the comparison between various telecom operators and the steps to get your number ported from one to the other.

Port number from Airtel to Jio

The porting services from Airtel to Jio are good. Jio offers good connectivity throughout India. Here’s you can port from Airtel to Jio:

  1. To port in, SMS PORT to 1900 from your existing number which needs to be ported to Jio
  2. You will get an SMS that will contain the UPC code and its expiry date
  3. Head to the nearest Jio Store or Jio Retailer with the Unique porting code (UPC)
  4. Carry your original Aadhaar card or original Proof of Address(POA) / Proof of Identity(POI) documents to place a request for MNP

 

Port number from Jio to Vi

Porting from Jio to Vi is a simple process. You have to follow the above-mentioned process, and you will soon be ported to Vi.

 

Port number from BSNL to Airtel

Porting from BSNL to Airtel is easy. Airtel offers better connectivity and offers than BSNL.

 

Advantages of number portability for customers

The implementation of offering to port number served as a motivator for various telecom providers to provide the finest telecom services to their customers. Customers, on the other hand, choose to port number for the following reasons:

  • New users are offered enticing telecom services.
  • Users can change operators for free.
  • When switching operators, you do not need to alter your phone number.
  • Users will receive a replacement SIM card in the appropriate size.
  • The user can switch from prepaid to postpaid plans and vice versa.
  • Current service providers may attempt to give better services and deals.

Issues with number portability in India

The issues to port number in India are as follows:

  • If a subscriber is on roaming, national roaming is deactivated, or there is no connection to the network once porting is done.
  • The digital payment system should be upgraded to pay bills. Or it should be able to identify cell phone numbers for payments till all invoices are paid on a number.
  • Several promotional SMS were issued during the porting procedure.


 

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Is it possible to port my landline number?

It is currently not yet possible to port your landline number but soon enough in the coming years, it will be. In a few years’ time, you would be able to take your landline number wherever you go, from any ‘X’ place to ‘Y’ in the country, even if you change your service provider. This is because the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has initiated the process of fixed-line number portability in the country.

 

How to apply for landline number portability?

Once the landline number portability will be officially active, Switcheroo will share all the relevant information and the process related to it.

 

FAQ

Can you port your SIM online?

Yes, you can port your sim online, and you need to download the application of the mobile service provider that you want to port your number to.

Can I transfer my prepaid balance when porting my number?

No, subscribers can only migrate their phone numbers but not their prepaid balance. It's better to utilise that balance before porting your number.

How much time does it take for number portability?

It will usually take three working days to port to another operator in the same circle or LSA. To transfer to another LSA, the MNP operation takes five business days. However, in the service areas of Jammu and Kashmir, Assam, and the North East, the porting operation will take 15 business days.

How to track number portability status?

To check the Mobile Number Portability status, you must contact your current provider. Users must supply the UPC after the connection is established, and Customer Care will keep you updated on the progress over the call.

 

Updated on 11 Mar, 2022

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