The Federal Communications Commission has proposed making number portability available nationwide in the US. Currently it is often limited to the local area code where the original number is based. The regulator started a public consultation on how to provide complete nationwide number portability, in order to reduce barriers to switching provider and stimulate competition.
The FCC said nationwide number portability would benefit especially small mobile providers, which often can’t port in a number originating from a location where they lack facilities. It would also eliminate disparities that make wireline and VoIP porting more limited than mobile porting.
The consultation seeks comments on the regulatory and technological changes that would be required to implement complete nationwide number portability between all service providers, regardless of size or type. As this would require extensive work, the FCC proposes taking an incremental approach.