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According to the most recent information, the DoT has approved TRAI’s recommendations from 29 May 2020 about the use of the prefix “0” when dialling mobile numbers from a fixed line.

Attention Landline Customers: Dialling prefix ‘0’ is mandatory for all fixed line (landline) to mobile calls from 15th January 2021

The Department of Telecommunication (DoT) has adopted TRAI recommendations on changing dialing patterns from fixed line numbers to cellular mobile numbers in order to provide appropriate numbering resources for fixed line (landline) and mobile resources.

The most recent information indicates that the DoT has approved TRAI’s recommendations dated 29-05-2020 on the use of the prefix “0” when dialing mobile numbers from a fixed line. Beginning on January 15, 2021, all fixed-line (landline) clients in the nation who are placing outgoing calls to mobile numbers must use the new dialing pattern. This implies that when calling any mobile number, whether it is within or outside of a service region, landline consumers must prefix the 10-digit number with the number “0.”

In an effort to comply with rising subscriber number levels for mobile users in the nation, TRAI has chosen to modify the dialing pattern. TRAI investigated five options that may be modified to satisfy the country’s future need for cellular customers in order to assure appropriate numbers. These five tactics were as follows:

  • Unified Numbering Plan for India
  • by removing fixed line levels, numbering resources are created.
  • Mandating dialling prefix ‘0’ for calling mobile numbers from fixed line.
  • Change from 10-digit to 13-digit numbering for Data Only Mobile Numbers
  • Switching over from 10-digit to 11-digit scheme for mobile numbers

Out of the above five alternatives, the option three i.e., mandating dialling prefix ‘0’ for calling mobile numbers from fixed line is found the most acceptable solution by all telecom service providers since this modification in dialling pattern will not cause major changes in the architecture and databases of fixed line network. There will be no change in dialling pattern for incoming international calls. There will be no change in dialling pattern of local fixed to fixed calls, which can be dialled without SDCA prefix. Overall, this scheme is found to be less disruptive for the fixed line segment. The present allocation and utilization of SDCA linked fixed line numbers is represented in below table.

Dialling intra-service area as well as inter-service area mobile numbers from fixed line with the prefix ‘0’

We will be able to use the levels “2,” “3,” “4”, and “6,” excluding the SDCA codes for mobile numbers, by simply modifying the dialing pattern for mobile numbers from fixed phones (landlines). The SDCA code with the suffix ‘0’, ‘1’, ‘8’, and ‘9’ can be used for the allocation of MSC codes for mobile services even in cases with SDCA codes commencing with ‘2’, ‘3’, ‘4’, and ‘6’. This plan will provide mobile services with roughly 2.544 billion numbering resources. Below are the precise calculations and their justifications: –

Levels “2,” “3,” “4”, and “6” can be used for mobile numbers if all fixed to mobile calls (including intra-circle and inter-circle) are called with the prefix “0.” All fixed line users would need to have the ability to dial ‘0’. Both the SDCA codes and subscriber numbers are unaffected. Given that subscribers currently have to use ‘0’ when contacting other SDCAs nearby, implementing this approach shouldn’t be a problem.

The DoT has requested the following network modifications from all wirelines (fixed line) telecom service providers by January 15, 2020, based on the aforementioned suggestions.

  • Fixed to mobile calls must be placed using the ‘0’ prefix.
  • To inform customers of the need to dial prefix “0” for all fixed to mobile calls, the appropriate notification may be delivered into fixed line switches. Every time a fixed line user phones a mobile number without the ‘0’ prefix, this notice should be broadcast.
  • The ‘0’ dialling option, or STD dialling option, should be made available to all fixed line customers.

If all goes according to plan and the DoT’s directives are fulfilled, all landline users in India will have to prefix zero for all incoming calls to mobile numbers commencing on January 15, 2021. No changes will be made to the country’s present mobile numbers’ numerical format or dialing scheme. M2M numbers, which are used on Machine-to-Machine SIM cards for Internet of Things applications, will be 13 digits long although all mobile phone numbers will still be 10 digits long.

Dear readers, kindly spread the word about this most recent information to all fixed line (landline) users in your friends’ networks. Please comment on this page with your thoughts and ideas on the most recent adjustment in the dialling pattern.

What do you think?

Written by Shallu Srivastav

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