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Huawei & Idea Launch Commercial Number Portability Solutions

Chinese telecom solutions major Huawei Technologies and Idea Cellular have launched commercial mobile number portability (MNP) solution in India, the company said on Friday.

Under this project, Idea will be able to provide number portability service to more than 63 million subscribers in 22 regions of the country and optimize the signaling network and support an all-IP network transformation for the telecom service provider, it said.

"We are the first operator to complete all LRN (local routing number)-based migration activities in India and this will allow our subscribers to avail number portability service in India," Anil Tandan, CTO of Idea said.

MNP, which was launched in few circles last November, allows subscribers to switch from one operator to another without changing their number after paying a small fee.

According to data released by the Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI), an estimated five million subscribers have opted for mobile number portability as on March 2011.

Of these, a net 192,761 customers switched to India's third-largest mobile carrier Vodafone Essar, while sixth-ranked Idea Cellular was next, with net gains of 150,789 customers. Top mobile operator Bharti Airtel gained a net 148,215 customers in MNP, but Reliance Communications was a net loser of 306,417 customers.

With 771 million mobile subscribers as of January, India is the world's second-biggest market for mobile services and it is the world's fastest growing market in terms of monthly net additions. Idea Cellular has over 72 million subscribers.

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