Landline users need to prefix ‘0’ to call mobile phones starting January 2021: TRAI

Telecom subscribers will have to prefix ‘0’ as they call from a landline to any mobile number starting January 1, 2021. The decision has been taken up in order to ensure adequate numbering resources for fixed line and mobile services. Telecom regulator TRAI had recommended the move in May this year.

A DoT‘s November 20 circular said that all the fixed line subscribers should be provided with ‘0’ dialing facility, STD dialing facility. All telecom service operators have been allowed time till January 1 to implement the directive.

DoT said that suitable announcements may be fed in the fixed line switches to apprise the fixed line subscribers about the requirement of dialing the prefix ‘0’ for all fixed to mobile calls. This announcement should be played whenever a subscriber dials a fixed to mobile call without prefixing ‘0’.

The regulator had, however, said that the introduction of dialing a prefix for a particular type of call is not akin to increasing the number of digits in the telephone number.

Meanwhile, India has a large base of smartphone users. And they get access to some of the cheapest data rates in the world. But all this hasn’t helped the country move up the global mobile data speed charts. The latest report puts India’s mobile data speeds at 131st position in the list, far behind nations like South Korea, Sri Lanka, and even Nepal and Pakistan.

As per Ookla Speedtest Global Index for September 2020, India’s average mobile download speed is 12.07 Mbps. This is significantly lower than the global average of 35.26 Mbps. In fact, that’s not all, the country’s average mobile upload speed and latency also lags behind at 4.31 Mbps and 52ms, respectively. This again is way below the global average of 11.22 Mbps upload speed and 42 ms latency.

Written with agency inputs

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