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Don’t Lose My Number

Phil Collins sings, "Billy don't lose my number." Soon, Phil will be able to switch wireless carriers - or even switch from a land line to a wireless phone - without losing his own number. Here's the article, and here's a quote:

But starting Nov. 24, 2003, most of the United States' 135 million wireless subscribers will be able to keep their cell-phone numbers even if they switch carriers.

The FCC's mandate forces carriers in the 100 largest urban areas to support wireless local number portability (PDF), which also lets wireless customers keep their numbers if they switch from a wire-line to a wireless carrier.

This is good news for consumers. I've only ever given out my home phone number, and I simply forward calls to my cell phone when I'm out of the house. I was very glad to keep my Bellsouth-assigned (561) number when I switched to MCI's "The Neighborhood" plan. Had I not been able to do that, well… that would have been the end of that idea.

This article goes on to talk about how this will eliminate a major barrier to switching, but fails to mention another: plans. Most cell phone plans are still yearly, are they not, with fairly large cancellation fees? Surely that's a good reason (restriction) to not switch.

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