Friday, November 20, 2009

Churn baby, Churn

Rs 19.

That's the fee for number portability.  Less than a half pack of ciggies cost.  With a purported 400 million user base, it's going to be one massive headache for the operator.  Much of the problem is one of their own making.  Increasing the subscribers without attendant increase in cell phone towers.  Dropped calls and no connectivity, with people on prepaid watching their precious talk time go down without a word being spoken, they're going to get socked like crazy by the prepaid crowd.

Everyone of my friends and colleagues are just waiting for this to get rolled out and then, they'd hit the phones and switch. I believe the salesmen who work on commission to close out on subscribers for each operator will make a killing in the first few months.

Though, I'm pretty sure, the operators will find a way to make it a disincentive to switch.  One rumour I heard was that it might take as long as 4 or 6 weeks for the switch to be complete.   If the US experience is considered when portability was introduced, I'd wait a good 6-8 months before switching.

If it comes to that.  I'll take a lower bill and other extra minutes thrown in, anytime rather than switch.  Since I have my broadband and mobile from the same operator, hopefully I have some leverage.

Hopefully.