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(MSNBC)   Soon you'll be able to switch cell phone companies and keep your phone number   ( divider line
    More: Spiffy  
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48 clicks; posted to Main » on 26 Mar 2003 at 8:42 PM (14 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»

83 Comments     (+0 »)

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2003-03-26 02:58:43 PM  
REASON #1 to leave Verizon:

"I'm not sure why we need it, as 30 some odd percent of the customers in this country switch carriers every year without this grand and glorious number portability opportunity," said Richard Lynch, Verizon Wireless chief technology officer.

What an asshat.
2003-03-26 03:06:17 PM  
Finally! When I switched, the money I saved was almost used up by making calls to everyone to let them know my new number. As long as they keep switching rate plans, people are going to change.
2003-03-26 03:15:06 PM  
I can't wait for this! I've been wanting to switch for a long time.

November it is!
2003-03-26 04:13:26 PM  
Wow, yet another good article on the Business section of TotalFark today for me to pawn off to my employer as "research for work." Keep em coming!
2003-03-26 07:12:45 PM's called WNP (or LNP from a landline) wireless number portability. It was a beyatch to implement.

Anyone looking for a telco engineer?!
2003-03-26 08:45:57 PM  
2003-03-26 08:49:21 PM  
Erm... You already can here :)
2003-03-26 08:50:13 PM  
The terms "avoid the hassle" and "phone company" should never appear in an article together. I believe they have a restraining order against one another that says they can't be within 500 yards of each other.

Just because they'll be allowed to port phone numbers doesn't mean they'll know how to do it... or do it simply... or do it cheaply... or do it at all.
2003-03-26 08:52:54 PM  
This will be a day long remembered. We've seen the end of ILEC monopolies, we'll soon see the end of the wireless monopolies as well.
2003-03-26 08:53:21 PM  
Wow! This is so cool! My country had this just only 4 years ago...
2003-03-26 08:53:52 PM  
Thank god. I need to get the hell away from VoiceStream/T-Mobile.
2003-03-26 08:55:39 PM  
Been able to do that for ages in Australia. You yanks are so far behind.
2003-03-26 08:57:26 PM  
Been able to do that for ages in Canada. You yanks are so far behind.
2003-03-26 08:57:54 PM  
THis has been around for the longest time, its called a SIM chip. I have a phone with it and when i buy a new phone the sim chip transfer over.
2003-03-26 08:58:28 PM  
A rant about cell phone use while driving a motor vehicle in
2003-03-26 08:59:06 PM  
Dazed420 , this is different. This is switching companies, not just phones.

But the SIM chip *is* cool.
2003-03-26 08:59:08 PM  
Been able to do that for ages in Swaziland. You yanks are so far behind.
2003-03-26 09:00:31 PM  
Wow, this would be great if I actually owned a cell phone.
2003-03-26 09:00:53 PM  
This is great news that would make my carrier (Telus) shiat donkey bricks. The ONLY hold they have over you is your number and they know it.

IMHO, they have absolutely wretched customer service and try to force long contract terms on you. Some of my friends dont care about changing numbers every year, but I've had the same # for 5 years now and dont care to change.

FWIW, I'm in Canada and wont benefit from all this, but its fun to talk about. If such legistlation were pass here, I predict there would be amazing strides made in the mobile customer service arena.

2003-03-26 09:01:17 PM  
Phone companies would rather assign 8 new area codes to a town of 10,000 people than to allow someone to keep their phone number.
2003-03-26 09:01:58 PM  

haven't we been PAYING these monkeys for phone number portability??

When will Vonage start a cell subsidiary? ;)
2003-03-26 09:02:14 PM  
Meanfriend, It's already been in Canada for a while. At least in BC. You're telus, so you have to be BC or alberta, right?
2003-03-26 09:02:34 PM  
But, we had a landline system that worked, Matteeg.
2003-03-26 09:03:31 PM  
I heard that around an area of Soviet Russia the number keeps you...I heard that.
2003-03-26 09:06:22 PM  
I'm curious to see what the "FEE" to switch will be.The good thing will be that mobile phone service will get cheaper.I have had a mobile phone for my only phone service for about two years now.
2003-03-26 09:06:30 PM  
Now, if they would just do away with the ancient area code system as well.
2003-03-26 09:07:34 PM  
[image from too old to be available]

Why does her expression convey the possibility that someone smeared shiate on her upper lip?

2003-03-26 09:08:14 PM  
Yeah Misterchill, I'm in BC.

Are you sure? A few months ago, my contract finished and I was inquiring about moving my monthly plan to a 'pay-as-you-go' plan and Telus couldnt (wouldnt?) even do that while letting me keep the same number.

Are you saying that I could move my cell# to Rogers or Fido or whatever and dump Telus? I didnt think that was impossible. Please post a link or more info if you have it! TIA
2003-03-26 09:09:59 PM  
Misterchill you can't do that in Canada with cell phones yet. They will not let you switch from Telus to Bell, Rogers or Fido and keep your number. I hope the implement number portability soon. It DOES exist for landlines, not cell phones.
2003-03-26 09:10:05 PM  
"I didnt think that was impossible" ?????

er, I mean, I didnt think that was *possible*

2003-03-26 09:10:52 PM  
Bubbaprog I second you on saying that Voicestream/T-mobile sucks. After having Sprint for 5 years I switched to Voicestream about a year and a half ago and it has sucked ever since. The T-mobile take over hasn't helped one bit. The only reason I haven't gone back to Sprint is because I have Aol AIM on my phone and I use it when I far I havent found other companies that have this feature.
2003-03-26 09:10:56 PM  
This is terrific. On November 5th, 8am, I am going to Verizon, cancelling my service, and moving to a cheaper company that has customer service.

Verizon sucks so bad you can hear it. But I have a bad-ass sequential phone # thru them that I use in my advertizing, so I am sort of trapped.

I asked them (after waiting on hold, wading through menus, and talking to mouth breathers for over 1.5 HOURS) if I could take the number w/me if I got my service from someone else. The answer?

"Um, no. and don't try it...those numbers are Verizon property. Is there anything else I can help you with?"

Someone needs to invent the phone-line assasin gun, where you can kill the asshole you are talking to instantly.

Where's that FARKer who promised to make the "baaad robots" a month ago or so?
2003-03-26 09:12:16 PM  
Meanfriend yeah no one will let you keep your paygo number when you switch to monthly. It's cause they use different blocks of numbers for the two. It's also teh dumb.
2003-03-26 09:14:24 PM  
Meanfriend, I'll check for links.

I'm sure. Telus is scum, so inter-telus crap may still suck. But I'm sure when you switch companies, the number will transfer. My buddy works at Bell mobility, and he told me that the switch to this new system happened a while ago.
2003-03-26 09:18:46 PM  
Both of my cell phones have had SIM chips in them, but they don't work in each other in the slightest. I think it takes more than the same type of media to make this happen.
2003-03-26 09:18:48 PM  
IncogneatO: Check out this link:

Look on the right hand side of the page. It appears that Sprint Vision will soon have AIM connectivity.
2003-03-26 09:21:28 PM  
It is sort of like splitting Microsoft into different companies.

I can't wait 'till one gets big enough to overwhelm and crush the other companies!
2003-03-26 09:22:08 PM  
horrible wording.

2003-03-26 09:25:14 PM  
I think I love you ;-) InternetSecurityGuard
2003-03-26 09:27:46 PM  
This is a huge waste of money. If you think rates are going to go down because if it you live in some sort of fantasy world. Also this became a law in 1996, but the carriers keep managing to push it back. Don't count on it going into effect in November either. Verizon, AT&T and several other carriers have recently filed suit against the FCC to push this back yet again. They want the landline carriers to be required to port there numbers to cells too.

BTW IncogneatO You can do AOL IM on Sprint too.
2003-03-26 09:27:54 PM  
IncogneatO: You're welcome. I am apparently a rare mobile phone subscriber. I have been using Sprint PCS for almost 5 years and I have no complaints.
2003-03-26 09:28:03 PM  
Its obviously a good idea, but it will also decrease the discounts companies offer.

Right now they know what a pain it is to switch companies because of the number issue, so they offer real, real good deals... won't have to do that anymore.

Secondly, ALL cel phone companies suck. Every one of them. Has anyone ever had a good experience with any one of them?
2003-03-26 09:28:09 PM  
Support my 401k. Buy Sprint.
2003-03-26 09:28:40 PM  
Those of us without cellphones continue not to give a fark.

Call me on my landline when a cell is <=$20/month for unlimited time.
2003-03-26 09:29:20 PM  
i don't know if this is a good idea. my friend Ackbar did this, but it seems like all the phone company wanted to do was put him in a confining or undesirable cicrumstance from which escape or relief was difficult.
2003-03-26 09:29:42 PM  
Australia has already got this....
2003-03-26 09:30:07 PM  
Jeho: I'll support Sprint when they full comply with the Tennesse Public Service Commission's six open investigatory dockets.

Also, number portability means another surcharge on your phone bill.
2003-03-26 09:33:02 PM  
I'd much rather be able to move my phone, not necessarily the phone number to another provider.

I've got a closet full of phones from previous providers that "aren't compatbile with 's network".

I agree, the US is backwards regarding SIM chips, etc.
2003-03-26 09:33:32 PM  
For those not in TN

Continue to support my 401K and buy Sprint.
2003-03-26 09:34:33 PM  
I use Cingular, free long distance, unlimited nights and weekends, call anywhere to anywhere, no roaming...

been with them awhile 39.99 a month.

Works fine for me.
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