Service disruptions and others have influenced 19,321 telecom subscribers to switch network providers in the first seven months of 2023.
According to porting data from the Nigerian Communications Commission, this was 11.99 percent increase from the 17,251 that was recorded in the corresponding period of 2022.
In the period under review, 9mobile (13,067) lost the most mobile subscriptions in the period; Airtel lost 2,607 subscriptions, Glo lost 2,342, and MTN lost 1,305.
According to the NCC, porting allowed subscribers to change their mobile network provider while retaining their number. These subscribers changed their network providers due to poor service quality offerings by their original service providers. The service was launched in April 2013.
During its launch, the commission said, “In furtherance of its efforts to promote competition, improve quality of service and ensure that consumers continue to enjoy a good experience on the mobile networks, the NCC launched mobile number portability service for GSM subscribers in April 2013.
“The MNP enables consumers to switch networks without losing their cellular phone numbers.”
According to telecom experts, subscribers move to other networks because of poor service quality offerings by their original service providers.
Recently, the House of Representatives invited regulators and operators in the telecoms space over poor network coverage in the country.
The President of the National Association of Telecoms Subscribers, Adeolu Ogunbanjo, noted that while service disruptions used to drive the demand for porting services in the past, the demand for uninterrupted cheap was now influencing porting activities.
He said: “Recently, more people are switching because of their need for cheaper data. So, it depends on who offers seamless data offerings, connectivity to the Internet. These people are not leaving their numbers behind in search of better Internet offerings, and port to other network providers. The search for cheaper data is driving the demand for this service today.”
According to him, porting occurred when a dissatisfied subscriber on a particular network relocated to another in search of satisfaction.
“There is also a need for more network expansion in the space to ensure improved service offerings in the space,” he said.