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Unlocking the digital future: The potential and power of mobile number portability in Jordan

By Kevin J Murphy - Sep 06,2023 - Last updated at Sep 06,2023

In the age of digital transformation, the ability to seamlessly transition between service providers is not just a luxury, it is a necessity. Mobile Number Portability (MNP) stands as a testament to this, serving as a beacon of empowerment and choice in the telecommunications realm. As nations globally harness the power of MNP to invigorate competition and amplify consumers’ choices, Jordan is well positioned for a transformative leap.

 

Economic benefits and market dynamics

 

Across the globe, the introduction of MNP has been a game-changer for the telecom sector. Take India, for instance. In the fiscal year 2023 alone, over 100 million mobile phone subscribers switched their telecom operator using the MNP feature, as reported by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI). This accounts for approximately 12 per cent of India’s mobile subscriber base for that year, showcasing the profound impact of MNP on consumer behaviour. While the immediate aftermath of MNP’s introduction did not witness a seismic shift in consumer behaviour, its mere presence recalibrated market dynamics. From pricing models to service quality, the ripple effects were palpable.

By introducing MNP, Jordan can stimulate healthy competition among telecom operators. When consumers have the freedom to switch without losing their numbers, service providers are incentivised to improve their offerings, leading to better service quality and competitive pricing. This benefits the end-users, but also attracts foreign investments, boosting the nation’s economic growth.

 

Creating a competitive landscape

 

The Indian experience, where subscribers leveraged MNP to choose providers that best meet their needs, underscores the importance of this service. Such freedom catalyzes telecom operators towards innovation and excellence, fostering a robust and competitive landscape.

For Jordan, this translates into a telecom sector in perpetual evolution. Service providers, recognizing the potential shift in subscriber loyalty, will innovate, ensuring unparalleled coverage, state-of-the-art services and competitive pricing. This environment is greatly beneficial for end-users while paving the way for technological advancements and groundbreaking innovations.

 

Enhancing subscriber base and consumer choice

 

The global narrative around MNP underscores its role as a tool of empowerment. In an increasingly interconnected world, the ability to seamlessly switch between service providers while retaining one’s number is a testament to the evolving consumer-centric landscape. Ericsson’s study, which delves into the intricacies of mobile networks, draws a direct link between advanced mobile networks and heightened productivity. This correlation suggests that as network capabilities expand, so does the potential for individual and collective productivity.

By championing MNP, Jordan has the opportunity to position itself at the forefront of this digital revolution. Ensuring its populace has access to premier network services not only caters to immediate communication needs but also lays the foundation for a myriad of digital services, from e-commerce to remote work solutions, propelling the nation’s digital aspirations.

Moreover, factors such as service quality, relational quality like satisfaction, trust, commitment and pricing, play pivotal roles in a consumer’s decision to switch. By emphasising these elements, Jordanian telecom operators can ensure a loyal subscriber base while also attracting new users.

 

Inspiring regulatory changes

 

The success of MNP hinges on more than just technological infrastructure; it requires a robust regulatory framework that ensures fairness, transparency, and efficiency in its implementation. Globally, the seamless integration of MNP has often been attributed to proactive regulatory bodies that have anticipated challenges and crafted guidelines to address them.

For instance, in the European Union, the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications (BEREC) has established guidelines that mandate a maximum time frame for number porting, ensuring that consumers face minimal disruption when switching providers. Similarly, in South Africa, the Independent Communications Authority (ICASA) has set forth regulations that not only define the technical aspects of MNP but also address issues related to consumer awareness and protection.

For Jordan, these international precedents offer valuable insights. Crafting a regulatory framework that champions the integration of MNP requires a holistic approach. It is not just about the technicalities of number porting but also about ensuring that consumers are informed, protected, and empowered throughout the process. By establishing clear guidelines, setting timelines, and ensuring transparency, Jordan can create an environment where MNP thrives, benefiting both consumers and service providers.

 

Global impact and the road ahead

 

The global economic contribution of mobile technologies is staggering. In 2022, mobile services contributed a whopping $5.2 trillion to the global GDP. This economic value addition, as highlighted by the Global System for Mobile Communications Association (GSMA), underscores the sector’s immense potential. With MNP in the mix, countries, including Jordan can further amplify their economic contributions, leveraging the productivity enhancements brought about by advanced mobile services.

Jordan is on the cusp of a digital renaissance. The introduction of MNP can be the linchpin anchoring this transformation. By fostering a competitive landscape, empowering subscribers and drawing foreign investments, MNP can illuminate the path to a brighter, interconnected future. As Jordan embarks on this journey, the onus is on regulators, ministries and stakeholders to harness MNP’s potential, crafting a narrative of growth, empowerment and digital excellence.

 

Kevin J Murphy is Vice President and Head of Ericsson Levant Countries and Country Manager Ericsson Jordan

 

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