Did you hear that the Indian government wants mobile numbers to have 13 digits and not 10? It’s true. Indian government has asked telecom companies to move to SIM cards with 13-digit phone numbers in some cases. And BSNL has already made plans to do so. But the key phrase here is some cases and it won’t affect you.
The important bit to note here is that, the 13-digit move won’t change your existing number or affect the phone users in India. The 13-digit numbers are meant only for M2M (machine2machine) SIM cards, or in other words the cards that will be used in automated machines. The Department of Telecom has written to telecom companies that they should issue only 13-digit M2M numbers and that they should convert all the existing 10-digit M2M numbers into 13-digit numbers from October 1, 2018 onwards. The deadline to complete the conversion is December 31, 2018.
Sources within Jio, one of the biggest telecom operator in India, have confirmed to India Today Tech that the 13-digit numbers are only for the M2M SIM cards. The DoT will directive will not affect regular users at all. “This is for machine to machine… no impact on regular mobile (numbers),” said a person familiar with the DoT directive.
According to a directive that BSNL has sent to its hardware vendors ZTE and Nokia, DoT in a meeting on January 8 decided that the M2M SIM cards in India need to have 13-digits. Accordingly, BSNL informed its vendors that it will need infrastructure that can handle 13-digit M2M numbers from July 1, 2018 onwards. Also, it informs vendors that migration of existing M2M numbers, which have 10-digits just like the regular phone numbers used by people, to 13-digit numbers will start from October 1, 2018 and will be completed by December 31, 2018.
The move, contrary to speculations doing rounds right now on social media, will not affect phone users. It is meant only for the SIM cards that are used in machines, such as internet-connected appliances.
We are also hearing that most of the telecom operators in India already issue a 11 or 15-digit number for M2M SIM cards. BSNL, however, does not and that is why it has issued a circular after the DoT decision. For other operators, even for the M2M SIM cards, it’s the business as usual.
The M2M SIM cards are used in automated machines that require network connectivity. These could be large industrial machines part of automated assembly lines or they could be small gadgets, part of the Internet of Things, such as the fire alarm in your house that may require internet or cellular connectivity to send out alerts.
Himanshu verma , Focused and hard working ! Electrical Engineer ! Website designer ! Technical Support ! Motivator ! Author ! Editor ! Writer !