Number Portability Gateway

Why a number portability gateway is crucial, and how to set it up

Read why a number portability gateway is crucial
11 March 2024

The number portability gateway is an essential link between the number portability system and an operators’ local systems. It handles all administrative and technical processes defined by the central portability database. Without the gateway, managing number portability is complex and demanding. Let’s look at the most important benefits of a number portability gateway, and how to set it up.

Do I need a number portability gateway?

The answer is almost always yes. When a country decides to utilize the benefits of number portability, there are only two cases in which a gateway isn’t needed.

  1. When porting is fully manual, including updating the local routing database,
  2. If the operator’s internal CRM/BSS or OSS system can fully adopt the APIs specified by the portability solution.

If one of the above doesn’t apply to your set up, you can certainly profit from a number portability gateway. This is why:

1. Save time and resources

As an operator you likely use a variety of platforms, such as a CRM/BSS and an OSS system. Sometimes, there are multiple setups for different product plans and customer bases. To streamline the porting process, the number portability gateway serves as a central hub, linking all relevant applications. It adopts existing specifications from the operator’s systems, minimizing the changes needed to enable number portability and saving time and resources.

2. Automate the verification process of a port-out

When a customer requests to move their number away (the port-out), a gateway can automate verification. Simultaneously or sequentially, it checks if the user exists, if the number is still active, if there are outstanding bills, and so on. When all checks pass, the port-out is approved. Once the porting is completed, the gateway can also close the account and deactivate the number in the operator’s systems.

3. Ensure a successful and complete port-in request

As a number moves to a new operator (port-in), this porting request must comply with specified business rules to be submitted to the NPC. The gateway can review automatically if all data for a complete porting request is collected. Common criteria include proper customer identification by the new operator and correct assignment of the account type (postpaid or prepaid). As long as the request is not compliant, it will be rejected.

4. Keep the central and local database in sync

For routing purposes, each operator manages a local database with number information. A gateway solution can synchronize this database automatically with the central portability database. Changes are reflected in real-time, ensuring efficient call routing and improved customer service.

Setting up a number portability gateway: what to consider

The benefits of a number portability gateway are clear. When you take the next step to choose the right solution, it’s important to consider technical, administrative and legal factors. 

First of all, ensure the solution complies with all laws and regulations in your region. Define the scope and required features, but don’t overlook scalability for future growth. Also consider compatibility: does the solution integrate well with the number portability system and your existing platforms? Last but not least, ensure the interface is user-friendly, to facilitate a smooth onboarding process for your team.

Need to know how to ready your systems for number portability? Don't hesitate to reach out!



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