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Telecoms: Mobile porting drops by 20%

Mobile Number Portability (MNP) wears a bearish look as incoming porting activities of Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) dropped by 20 per cent in 2017, New Telegraph has learnt. Incoming (inward) porting is simply the number of subscribers that ported from another service provider’s network into a service provider’s own network.


According to the analysis of the yearly Porting Activities of Mobile Network Operators (GSM) report obtained from the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), incoming porting stood at 172, 994 in December 2017 whereas it was 217,980 in December, 2017. Placing 2017 and 2016 yearly reports side by side revealed that with two per cent drop in incoming porting activities in 2016, the 20 per cent drop in 2017 pale in comparison.


Meanwhile, incoming porting activities could only hit the 20,000 mark in March, 2017 but hit the 20,000 mark in the entire second quarter (April, May and June) of 2016 and surpassed it in March of the same year with a total number of 21,120 porters.


Also, the highest level incoming porting activities ever rose to in 2017 was 53,468 whereas the lowest level incoming porting activities ever tipped to in 2016 was 49,547. Further analysis revealed that, at the end of the last quarter of 2017, MNOs boasted of 49,547 incoming porters in 2016 while in 2017, it was mere 27,037. In the third quarter, incom ing porting activities stood at 55,558 in 2016 but in 2017, it was 51,070.


But at the end of the second quarter, while incoming porting activities rose to the highest level with 53,468 in 2017 it got to the zenith in 2016 with 61,571. Likewise in the first quarter, which is the beginning of the year, Incoming Porting activities stood at 51,301 in 2016 while it was 41, 419 in 2017.


However, a closer look at the 2017 report, in respect to the four leading mobile telecoms operators, showed that 9mobile had the highest number of incoming porting activities with 115,280, followed by Airtel 25,895 then MTN 21,924 and Globacom trailing behind with 9,931.


Also, a further analysis of the 2017 report brought to the fore that no other network (MTN, Globacom and Airtel) was able to displace 9mobile in the four quarters of the year as they jostled to outdo one another.


Starting from the last quarter of that year, 9mobile had 13,168 while MTN surpassed others with 6,645, followed by Airtel 4,813 and then Globacom 2,411, according to the report.


The third quarter saw Airtel taking a step forward, displacing two others with 7,209, MTN trailed behind with 6,266, then Globacom 2,606, while 9mobile still took the lead with 35,025. In the second quarter, Airtel remained rigid in its position with 7,017, MTN 4,196, Globacom 2,417, while 9mobile 39,838.


By the end of first quarter, 9mobile had begun its feat with 27,249, Airtel tagging along with 6,856, MTN, 4,817 and Globacom, 2,497. According to Industry experts have explained that the steep slope Porting activities are sliding on in recent times is hinged on two things: consumers’ experience and economic consideration.


Reacting to the development, Director of Public Affairs of Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC), Mr. Tony Ojobo, noted that the prevailing economic condition of the country has caused many to want to cut cost desperately, thereby affecting porting activities generally. “Recession had serious impact on people’s purchasing power; because of economic issues, many subscribers want to cut cost.


Those who are using three lines will definitely want to reduce them to two or even one because of cost implication. The question is: if I have a number that is serving me well, why should I leave it or want to acquire another?”


Ojobo went further to reveal that those who might have the need to port most of them had already taken that decision since porting activity itself was not a recent phenomenon. Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of AAA Infotek, Mr. Akin Akinbo, noted that the limitation porting activities impose on numbers have caused many to jettison the idea of Porting to any other network of choice.


“From the people that we have interacted with, we leant that there are many banking transactions that they cannot do with the numbers that have ported.


“Consequently, words of mouth or feedback from the people who have experienced such limitations will go a long way in discouraging other people from engaging in porting activities. You know word-of-mouth marketing is very portent,” he said.




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