Vietnam may allow mobile users to keep number when switching networks

TN News

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The Ministry of Information and Communications is finalizing a plan to allow mobile phone users to switch to a different network without having to change their numbers, news website VnExpress reported Saturday.

The plan has been created based on trends in other countries and will be announced later for public opinion, the report said, citing the ministry's Telecommunications Authority.

Vietnam has seven mobile network operators with more than 120 million subscribers in total.

Each of the operators has their own number series. Viettel's numbers, for instance, start with 098 and MobiFone, 090. Currently, users have to switch to a new number if they choose a new network.

VnExpress said the Ministry of Information and Communications began to consider allowing mobile phone users to keep their numbers unchanged at the end of 2006, but a specific plan has not been announced since.

Analysts have said once the mobile phone market has reached saturation and market shares have been divided among telecom firms, it is necessary to give users the option of switching to another service provider to facilitate competition.

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