Mobinil to cut service to unregistered mobiles

The Egyptian Company for Mobile services, better known as Mobinil, is cutting service to unregistered phone lines starting in April.

The measure will target mobile phone lines that have no registration details, said Mobinil’s CEO Hassan Qabbani. The Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) is requiring operators to cut off service to unknown users.

Certain phones that do not meet certain specifications will also have their service dropped, said Qabbani. Therefore, any lawsuit against mobile phone operators will be referred to the TRA, which issued the original regulations.

As yet, there have not been any major issues with incompatible mobile phones; however, the TRA and Customs Authority should actively cooperate to block the entry of such phones into the market, since many consumers do not know if their phones comply with phone specifications.

Many mobile customers have not taken the companies’ calls for replacing their phone seriously, Qabbani added. On Wednesday, Egypt’s three mobile phone operators–Mobinil, Vodafone and Etisalat- started cutting service to 15,000 customers who are using Chinese-made phones that do not comply with TRA specifications.

In other news, Qabbani said Mobinil plans to resume negotiations with Orascom Telecom over its possible acquisition of Linkdotnet, an information technology company. Negotiations were suspended due to complications between Orascom Telecom and France Telecom. A deal will be made within a few weeks, Qabbani added.

When asked about the possibility of a fourth mobile phone operator license, Qabbani said right now is not an appropriate time, since Egypt’s third mobile phone operator Etisalat, has yet to fully establish itself in the market.

Translated from the Arabic Edition.

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