New prefix for mobile phone subscribers unveiled
Safaricom and Airtel subscribers will soon be issued with new mobile number prefix. The Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) on Tuesday released a new mobile numbering prefix 01xxx which has the capacity to handle 100 million subscribers.
According to CA Director General Francis Wangusi, the new prefix – which is expected to take effect immediately – was necessitated by increased demand for SIM cards, mobile data, and Machine-to-Machine (M2M) communications.
Safaricom has been allocated two million lines with the prefixes of 0110 and 0111 while Airtel has been offered three million numbers with the prefixes 0100, 0101 and 0102.
“The introduction of the new mobile numbering prefix 01 is in line with National Numbering Plan developed in 2002 by the Authority, in consultation with ICT industry operators and other stakeholders,” read the statement.
“In addition to the development of the National Numbering Plan, the Authority also has put in place procedures and guidelines proper management of the numbering resources such as the online platform to ease of application for numbers.”
Further, CA has assured mobile phone subscribers that the introduction of the number does not have cost any implications.
“I wish to further assure consumers that introduction of a new series of mobile phone number prefix will have no cost implications on the consumer. Instead, it will encourage more innovations and investments in the sector, particularly with the proliferation of new technologies that are widening the horizon for new and innovative services, ” Wangusi said.
The new numbers will also be allocated to operators of land fixed numbers (landlines), premium rate numbers, toll-free numbers, and short codes, among others.