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...The intent of RBI is to support the “prospect of an aggrieved customer silently moving her account to another bank”. However, the customer value of the idea is questionable. The chief customer-centric issues on this proposal are: 1)What pain does account number portability solve? 2)Is there a barrier to exit? Does it improve choice? 3)Will it deliver improved services through competitive impact? A mobile number is a primary public contact identifier for individuals. Before mobile number portability (MNP), changing one’s mobile operator necessitated a number change. Postpaid higher income customers with large contact lists were likelier to be ‘hostages’ enduring poor service over the pain of switching. Prepaid customers rarely cared and switched every time they got better tariffs. Before MNP, it was possible for a customer to switch providers—with a minor inconvenience and no financial cost. Only around 0.5% of mobile subscribers request number porting each month. This is lower than churn. ...Live Mint on June 4, 2017, 11:48 p.m.