April 6, 2009

India - CDMA, GSM Mobile Phones to Have 11 Digit Numbers

If remembering 10-digit mobile phone numbers is hard task for you, soon you'll have an addition to the problem. The Department of Telecom, or DoT, is considering making mobile phone numbers to contain 11 digits.

The 11 digits numbering system will be applicable for CDMA and GSM numbers. DoT is currently mulling over how exactly this system will be implemented. In most probability, there may be a '9' prefix before all numbers.

Apparently, the approximate base limit of 10 digit numbers is 450 million subscribers, which is likely to get exhausted as soon as by early next year.

Interestingly, in 2003 National Numbering Plan (NNP) of DoT had said, "When subscriber base in an SDCA (short distance charging area, or a circle in common parlance) expands beyond 4 crore, changeover from 10-digit to 11-digit may be required. However, this scenario is not envisaged almost for another 30 years."

Well, looks like their calculations faced a few minor errors.

Currently, China and UK are the two countries which use the 11 digit numbering system.

According to Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), India's total wireless subscribers (GSM, CDMA & WLL(F)) base was recorded to be 375.74 million at the end of February 2009.

[Source]

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