Monday, 11 May 2009

Ofcom announce changes to 0870 numbers

Ofcom have announced that the proposed changes to 0870 numbers will come into effect on 1st August 2009. The aim is to rebuild public confidence in NGNs (Non Geographic Numbers) by restoring the geographic link for 0870 ‘national rate’ calls and will require mobile and fixed line providers to charge the same or less for 0870 calls as they do for calls to geographic numbers (starting 01 or 02) and be included in any call packages. The Ofcom change will mean that revenue sharing will no longer available on 0870 numbers. Calls received by 0870 number owners will become chargeable. A pricing announcement will follow shortly; however, this is likely to be in line with current Area-Call charges.

There are 3 main options available:

1. Leave the 0870 number live and accept the new charges. The service will continue as normal and routing will not be affected.
2. Cease the existing 0870 number. This can be ceased immediately or when the new regulations come into place on 1st August 2009
3. Migrate the service to another non-geographic number. Should you require revenue sharing Plum would recommend 084* (0844, 0843) or 087* (0871, 0872) numbers.

Numbers can be run in parallel to ensure no loss of business, for example, continue to run the 0870 number with an announcement that the number is changing, to enable your customers to get used to the changes gradually. When the changes come in to affect, either cease the number or leave an announcement on advising customers to dial the new number. Plum offer both of these services.

Ofcom have also announced that once the 0870 changes have been implemented they will consider whether a review on 0845’s is necessary and advise on the appropriate timing of this. An announcement will be made on this in 2009 or 2010.

Alternative numbers
•0843 is an extension of the 0844 range with price points from 1ppm to 5ppm
•0872 is an extension of the 0871 range with price points from 5ppm to 10ppm
(subject to PhonepayPlus regulations)

For a PDF version of this announcement, please click here.

Do not hesitate to contact Plum on 0161 622 3500 or at if you have any queries regarding this new legislation or would like to discuss the available options for your current 0870 number.

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