Main Forum >> Call Providers >> Ofcom's changes to 070 numbers.

Message started by Ian01 on Mar 1st, 2018 at 10:01am

Title: Ofcom's changes to 070 numbers.
Post by Ian01 on Mar 1st, 2018 at 10:01am

Calls to personal numbers starting 070 can be very expensive. The termination rate is currently up to about 40p per minute. Retail call charges can be as high as £2.50 per minute. The incidence of scams on this number range has reduced since revenue sharing was banned in 2007, however numerous issues remain to be solved.

Ofcom proposes reducing the termination rate for calls to 070 numbers to just 0.49p (£0.0049) per minute (the same rate as incurred on calls to UK mobile numbers) such that calls to personal numbers starting 070 can be charged to callers on the same basis as their calls to UK mobile numbers starting 071 to 075 and 077 to 079.

The changes will take place before the end of 2018 and will result in the called party paying for the call-forwarding features, not the caller.

Title: Re: Ofcom's changes to 070 numbers.
Post by allegro on Mar 2nd, 2018 at 7:27am
Many years overdue. Have they dealt with 076 numbers at the same time?

Title: Re: Ofcom's changes to 070 numbers.
Post by Ian01 on Mar 2nd, 2018 at 8:17am

No. This consultation covered only 070 numbers.

076 numbers are for pagers. There are very few of those left now. It can't be all that long before all of the pager allocations fall into disuse and are withdrawn.

Title: Re: Ofcom's changes to 070 numbers.
Post by CJT-80 on Mar 3rd, 2018 at 10:46am

Ian01 wrote on Mar 2nd, 2018 at 8:17am:
No. This consultation covered only 070 numbers.

076 numbers are for pagers. There are very few of those left now. It can't be all that long before all of the pager allocations fall into disuse and are withdrawn.

On the brief subject of Pagers I have just seen this regarding Vodafone closing their paging network.  Could this be the start of things to come?

(I appreciate it's slightly off topic)

Title: Re: Ofcom's changes to 070 numbers.
Post by Ian01 on Mar 3rd, 2018 at 11:58am

Vodafone proposes to end their paging service later this month. Several other providers of pager services have also ceased in recent years. PageOne is attempting to gain those customers. There are now only a very small number of paging service providers and this will further diminish as users migrate to ordinary mobile phones and short messaging services.

Title: Re: Ofcom's changes to 070 numbers.
Post by Dave on Mar 3rd, 2018 at 7:25pm
Populists, no doubt, regard pagers as not very popular and expect them to die out in the not-to-distant future. But the people who use pagers value them – they don't use them because they don't know about SMS. Coverage is one aspect that gives them an edge.

Vodafone is closing its network, apparently, because of interference from the Competition Markets Authority. Its original intention was to sell its network to PageOne, but the CMA stuck its oar in. The regulator said it was concerned that a merger of the two would result in price rises for customers and a poorer service, and so sought to open an investigation. As a result, Vodafone decided it would cost it too much and so will close the network at the end of this month.

Quote from Vodafone axes pager business 'based on ageing technology', 10 May 2017, The Guardian:

“Capita and Vodafone both supply wide-area paging services to customers, including emergency services and hospitals. Customers rely on pagers because issues such as coverage, reliability and battery life mean that alternative technologies, like mobile phones, are not suitable,” the regulator said.

“The Competition and Markets Authority’s initial investigation into the merger has found that it could lead to a substantial lessening of competition. After the merger, customers could face price rises and reduced quality of coverage.”

Ironically, the CMA's justification for doing what it did may now come to fruition. Integrating the network into PageOne's network might have meant coverage being improved through PageOne taking on some of Vodafone's base stations in areas it doesn't already serve. The 1,000 or so Vodafone users will have to endure the inconvenience of changing number. This is thanks to the CMA sounding off in its tiny compartment with no regard for the bigger picture.

Title: Re: the CMA and the Capita acquisition of Vodafone
Post by SilentCallsVictim on Mar 4th, 2018 at 5:22am
Those interested to understand the CMA's decision to fully investigate the desirability of the acquisition may wish to read its decision.

A public body has to take great care to ensure that it is not being distracted from undertaking its public duty by a bluff.

If Vodafone chooses not to find an alternative buyer for what could be a perfectly sound business, or allow the CMA investigation to proceed and argue its case along with Capita, then there is little that anyone can do. Private companies are not compelled to act rationally, by the rules of the free market, they are only expected so to do.

Brexiteers may be quick to point out that, without the rules of the Single Market, the government could have stepped in to buy out both operations. Once Brexit is complete, Capita could yet be in danger.

Title: Re: Ofcom's changes to 070 numbers.
Post by Ian01 on Mar 12th, 2018 at 11:52am

Ofcom's consultation recently closed and a few of the responses are beginning to emerge on third-party websites. The rest won't been seen until Ofcom publishes the official copies.

There is likely to be quite a bit of support for maintaining the current arrangements as telecoms providers make quite a bit of money from these calls. Ofcom is, however, determined to eliminate the various problems found with this number range.

In particular, cutting the termination rate from around 40p per minute down to 0.49p per minute, will mean that Hospedia will no longer be able to operate under their existing business model if they continue to use the 070 range.

One notable response can be found at and Ofcom should find it very easy to dismiss all of their arguments.

Title: Re: Ofcom's changes to 070 numbers.
Post by Ian01 on Mar 12th, 2018 at 11:53am

When mobile telephony was still new, the UK regulator decided to group ‘personal’ or ‘follow me’ numbers that begin 070 alongside the numbers beginning 07 and which are associated with mobile phones. However, these uses are very different, and the confusion between them leads to exploitation of telecoms customers not just in the UK but also worldwide.

The exploitation comes not because they have a different usage, but because they have a different retail price.

The cost for dialling an 070 number is typically higher than that for calling a mobile phone, and part of that fee may be paid to the recipient of the call.

Revenue sharing with end users was banned by Ofcom in 2007 but Ofcom correctly identifies that... "High 070 termination rates caused by 070 TCP’s SMP have the potential to lead to many cases of fraudulent use of the number range."

Ofcom proposes to align the cap (for 070 numbers) with that for mobile numbers, currently circa 0.5ppm.

RAG believes that this is a fundamental mistake. Fixing termination rates so that calls to 070 numbers cost a similar amount to calls to other numbers beginning 07 will reduce the incentive to criminals, but it does not address the root cause of the original problem: that customers believe that dialling an 070 number will call somebody’s mobile phone.

Callers do not care where the call is answered, their expectation is that a call to an 070 number costs the same as calling a mobile number and is included in call allowances in the same way. While termination rates for 070 numbers remain at a high level, this cannot be the case. The root cause of the problems is the high termination rate.

As a consequence, the public will continue to be at risk of being deceived.

After the reduction in termination rates, callers may continue to be deceived as to the true identity of who they are speaking to, but this an issue that can be encountered when calling any type of telephone number.

Furthermore, there are legitimate uses of the 070 number range, and genuine business models that rely on the income generated by a relatively high call cost.

Using a "personal number" to generate income is not a genuine use of this number range. Revenue sharing with end users was banned in 2007.

The strongest example is the extent to which NHS hospitals receive an income from calls made to telephones placed alongside a patient’s bed.

Usage of the 070 range by Hospedia has been ripping off relatives and friends of hospital patients for more nearly two decades. Ofcom's actions will, quite rightly, eject Hospedia from this number range.

Simply reducing the price of calls made to 070 numbers used in hospitals risks eliminating the revenues that currently subsidize hospitals.

Ofcom's proposal seeks to reduce the termination rate, such that there will be no income from these calls. Reductions in retail prices will follow, but are not guaranteed.

Rather than introducing price caps, we believe the best solution is for Ofcom to end confusion in the minds of customers by changing its dialling plan so that the so-called ‘personal’ 070 numbers begin with a different series of digits, so they bear no similarity to the 07 numbers that everyone associates with mobile phones.

RAG proposes to leave all the elements that make retail charges high in place along with all of the features that allow scammers and criminals to remain anonymous. They propose merely changing the prefix so that personal numbers can no longer be confused with mobile numbers. This does not represent a useful solution, it merely moves it elsewhere.

Personal numbers were never meant to be used for earning an income. Those who wish to do so now have a vast choice of number ranges and Service Charge price points by selecting from the 084, 087, 090, 091 or 098 number ranges. Most of those ranges are also comprehensively covered by CPRS regulation.

This will undermine the business model of those few providers who deliberately profit from that confusion.

Ofcom identified that it is the called party that chooses which personal numbering service they wish to use, but it is the caller that pays all the charges incurred in using that service. The called party has no influence on what those charges will be. This does not promote proper competition and hence Ofcom proposes to reduce the termination rate to 0.5p per minute and make the called party pay for provision of the service - an entirely different business mode to the current arrangement. This will also require the called party to identify themselves in setting up and paying for the service - something that does not currently occur. This will make it harder for scammers and criminals to remain completely anonymous.

Title: Re: Ofcom's changes to 070 numbers.
Post by Ian01 on Mar 12th, 2018 at 11:53am

From their consultation response:

Probably the most important legitimate use of 070 destinations today is to allow friends and family to speak with their loved ones who are restricted to hospital beds across the NHS.

This is not a legitimate use for personal numbers, and the exhorbitant and opaque call charges represent a long-standing rip-off of relatives and friends of hospital patients.

The provision of these services, whilst not universally popular

Once people have seen their phone bill, I would posit these services are "universally UNpopular".

We would urge Ofcom to please consider that the problems it has outlined which are associated with the 070 number range, such as excessive prices, bill shock, service provider fraud, international artificial traffic inflation, and identify related fraud, have very little to do with companies providing services to patients and their loved ones, and more to do with management of retail telecommunications number plans and pricing, and also management of telecommunications wholesale operations.

Excessive retail prices are caused by a combination of high termiantion rates and profiteering. The major cause of bill shock on the 070 range is the cost of calling hospital bedside phone lines. Service provider fraud and AIT is enabled by high termination rates. Identity-related fraud is enabled by the fact the caller bears all of the call-handling and call-forwarding costs while the called-party can remain almost completely anonymous, even to the telecoms provider. The telecoms provider may only have one piece of information about the called party - the telephone number to which calls are forwarded. That number may be unregistered making the called party untraceable.

We do not believe that the valid service providers should be impacted by these problems as they do not contribute towards them.

Valid service providers continue to enable identity fraud. Ofcom's proposals should go a long way to eliminate this.

We believe Ofcom could do more at a strategic level to help guide the industry in best practice for both making pricing more obvious and in the management of wholesale operations to eradicate fraud.

Reduction of the termination rate to the same level as for calls to mobile numbers will enable call charges to reduce to the same leval as for calls to mobile numbers. These changes should eliminate many of the issues currently found on the 070 number range.

Rather than imposing price changes which are restricted to 070, Ofcom may also wish to consider kicking off the wider strategic initiative of reviewing and improving the UK telephone numbering plan.

Ofcom's MCT Review is conducted every three years and recent reviews in 2015 and 2018 have led to a number of improvements in the 071 to 075 and 077 to 079 ranges used for mobile phones.

This could be done in such a way as to create a real separation between ‘normal 07 mobile’ and ‘all other expensive 07 type destinations’ .

Ofcom and other bodies are working hard to ensure that there are no expensive 07 destinations. Ofcom has reduced the termination rate for mobile numbers allocated in the UK to 0.49p per minute and competition authorities in CI and IoM are not far behind. The small number of pagers utilising the 076 range currently present little or no problem.

We observe that there are many other 07 destinations which cause issues such as 07305 – fw10, 074180 – fw12, 074521 – fm11, 077978 – f. These types of other destinations have also been seen to occasionally result in bill shock, service provider fraud or international artificial traffic inflation. They are also, like 070, generally omitted from free bundled mobile minutes for UK consumers.

This is partly incorrect. 07305 is a normal prefix assigned to Virgin Mobile. 074180 is a normal mobile prefix assigned to Three Mobile. Calls to these numbers are inclusive in allowances.

074521 is assigned to Manx Telecom and 077978 is assigned to Jersey Telecom. While these are currently excluded from allowances, forthcoming termination rate changes in CI and IoM should alter this later in 2018 or some time in 2019.

For example, all expensive 07 destinations could in theory be assigned to the 04 or 06 numbering bands. Assignment to existing 08 and 09 bands may not be an ideal solution as the pricing structures required may not be in place and such an assignment may result in issues such as national call barring or inability to dial numbers form overseas.

Where providers which to earn revenue, the long-established 084, 087, 090, 091 and 098 ranges are available to do so. There are one hundred Service Charge price points available, including rates which are commensurate with termination rates used throughout the 07 range.

If Ofcom were to active new 04 or 06 number ranges, there is no guarantee that access from overseas would be any different to that for calls to 08 or 09 numbers. Such a move would be a waste of a number range.

Ofcom's reforms are all about simplicity and that means a reduction in number ranges and pricing variables.

Title: Re: Ofcom's changes to 070 numbers.
Post by Ian01 on Mar 12th, 2018 at 11:54am

The document also encourages readers to click through to a report at and that document also contains some errors.

UK’s number ranges 070/075/076 are associated with the so called personal numbers allocations.

070 is the only personal numbers range.
075 is used for ordinary mobile phones, the same as other ranges 071 to 075 and 077 to 079.
076 is used by pagers, except for 07624 which is used by mobile phones in the Isle of Man.

Personal Numbering Services (PRS)

The correct abbreviation is PNS. The abbreviation PRS (Premium Rate Service) is used multiple times elsewhere in the document. Premium Rate Services (PRS) are not to be confused with PNS (Personal Numbering Services).

There is an argument that personal numbers should never charge premium rates and Ofcom's reforms will enable this to be so.

Other blog posts on this topic have been found elsewhere

Time to Fix the UK’s Fraud-Enabling Dial Plan

This is what Ofcom is doing. The end result should be that numbers starting 01, 02, 03 and 07 (except 076) are included in allowances otherwise charged at a fixed rate, numbers starting 080 are free-to-caller, and numbers starting 084, 087 and 09 are premium rate with an Access Charge and a Service Charge.

For example, it was a mistake to have all sorts of so-called ‘personal’ and ‘follow-me’ phone numbers, including those which pay revenues to the call recipient, begin with the digits 070. Numbers beginning 07 are associated with mobile phones by the majority of consumers, and also by quite a few foreign comms providers.

When this was originally conceived in the mid-1990s and put into action in 1997, it was a good idea. Back then, the termination rate for calls to personal numbers, mobile numbers and pager numbers was around 40p per minute and the concept of inclusive call plans did not exist. However, changes since then have opened up a huge price differential.

Over time, the mobile termination rate has reduced. First, this allowed inclusive call plans to be developed. Over time, as the rate was further reduced, this allowed ever larger inclusive call plans. As the termination rate for personal numbers and pager numbers has not reduced, these are not included in allowances and that has caused many problems. The removal of revenue sharing from personal numbers in 2007 made many of the scams go away, but there were still opportunities for money to be made.

The business model for personal numbers is severely flawed. The called party chooses which service they want to use, and callers pay for that service. This does not promote effective competition.

The crux of the issue is that 070 numbers are easily confused with other numbers beginning 07.

The crux of the problem is that calls to personal numbers cost a lot more than calls to mobile numbers.

The long-term solution is hence to choose dial codes that are less likely to be confused. Expensive types of call services would be easier to distinguish if their numbers began with 04 or 06.

Ofcom has identified that there is no reason for calls to personal numbers to be expensive. Indeed, the lack of proper competition comes from the very fact that at present all of the costs inherent in using a personal number are borne by callers.

Capping the termination rate and lowering retail call charges will address the problem and genuine premium rate services can use the appropriate 084, 087 or 09 number range to raise revenue. There is no need for yet another prefix such as 04 or 06. Indeed, in 2007, the personal numbering industry argued that numbers should not be changed.

To avoid the cost, Ofcom proposes a different kind of solution: implementing price controls on 070 numbers. This would reduce the motivation for fraud, but without addressing the potential for confusion.

Setting a price control does fix the problem. Calling a personal number will cost the same as calling a mobile number. People,don't care where a call to an 070 number ends up being answered. They care that the cost is what they expected it to be - the same as calling a mobile number.

Furthermore, price controls will hurt legitimate businesses even more than fraudsters. Whilst the fraudsters can simply adopt a different kind of scam, legitimate businesses that have advertised their service and built up their reputation will be undermined by price controls.

Legitimate personal numbering services will have to adopt a new business model - one where the call-forwarding costs are borne by the called party, not the caller.

Organisations that want those charges to be borne by callers can choose an 084, 087 or 09 number and properly declare the call charges.

Title: Re: Ofcom's changes to 070 numbers.
Post by Ian01 on Mar 12th, 2018 at 12:00pm

One of the most common uses of the 070 number range is for bedside phones in hospitals. The phones provide an essential service to patients, ...

Calls to bedside phones are charged at extortionate rates with non-transparent pricing. If Hospedia and others wish to continue running a premium rate service they should move to an appropriate 09 number and properly declare the call charges.

At present, the termination rate is around 40p per minute and retail charges can be up to £2.50 per minute - a truly eye-watering rip-off. Using an 09 number would see Hospedia declare their Serice Charge to which the caller's provider will add their Access Charge. From landlines, the Access Charge is typically 10p to 14p per minute. From mobiles, the Access Charge is typically 40p to 55p per minute.

With such a move, most callers would see a large decrease in call charges. A small number of landline users, might see a small increase in call charges.

Is it unreasonable to set prices to ensure these phones, which will be used erratically, should generate a profit for the provider, especially if the alternative is that no phone is provided?

Some may argue that charging more than for a standard call to a landline number is unreasonable. However, if the provider can justify charging premium rates, then moving to an obvious premium rate number range (such as 09) and properly and transparently declaring the call charges should present no problem for them.

Personal numbers were never meant to host premium rate services or services charging rates akin to those charged by premium rate services. Ofcom's changes will eliminate that charging differential such that calls to 070 numbers can be charged at the same rate as calls to mobile numbers.

Furthermore, many British hospitals make a profit from these phones – they receive income from the service being provided.

This is NOT how "our NHS" should be funded - charging rip-off rates for contact with family and friends at a time of great stress.

disagrees with Ofcom’s proposed price controls and urges proper and lasting reform of the UK national number plan.

Ofcom has judged the reforms right and has proposed the right solution.

Callers will have an expectation that inclusive allowances cover calls to numbers starting 01, 02, 03 and 07 (except 076) and will be clear that the only expensive numbers are those starting 076, 084, 087, 09 and 118. Calls to numbers starting 080 and 116 are free-to-caller. This is very much simpler than the situation only a few years ago.

Title: Re: Ofcom's changes to 070 numbers.
Post by Ian01 on Mar 12th, 2018 at 12:05pm

The UK regulator, Ofcom, has long known about the problem and understood the drivers behind abuse of this legitimate range, and are now looking to do something about it.  It is excellent that action is being taken.

Yes, the main enabler is that call charges and termination rates for the 070 range are higher than for calls to mobile numbers.

However, the proposed change is to introduce a cap on termination fees generated by 070 services rather than migrating them to a more suitable range.

Migrating to another range was rejected by the personal numbers industry in 2007. Moving to a different range and leaving termination rates and retail call charges at a high rate would do nothing to alleviate the problems of callers spending too much.

A change in termination pricing superficially addresses the symptoms and will likely reducing associated revenues behind the misuse, but it doesn’t remove the obfuscation that surrounds this confusing family of 07 numbers in the UK.

Ofcom's change is exactly the right thing to do. For a genuine personal numbering service there is no valid reason why the additional call-forwarding charges should be borne by callers. Instead, Ofcom proposes these charges be borne by the called party, as already happens with standard landline and mobile numbers and with non-geographic 03 numbers.

Lowering the termination rate for calls to 070 numbers to be the same as the rate for calls to mobile numbers opens the door to retail call charges and inclusion in call allowances for 070 numbers to be the same as for calls to mobile numbers. This is what callers want.

In fact, altering the pricing in such a manner may well negatively impact legitimate revenue streams, and jeopardize continued support and investment for communication services that are crucial to many individuals who rely upon them, such as patients staying in NHS hospitals.

There is no place within a "personal numbering service" for a premium rate service generating a revenue stream. If Hospedia want to run a premium rate service there are suitable number ranges and a wide variety of suitable Service Charge price points in the 09 number range - a place where they will also be able to properly and transparently declare the call charges.

Ofcom's proposed reforms to the 070 number range are to be commended.

Ofcom proposes cutting the termination rate for personal numbers so that calls will cost the same as calling mobile numbers. They also propose that the called party pays for the call-forwarding. The measures will mean revenue earning services will move to other number ranges.

RAG proposes leaving the termination rate and call charges high and simply moving the personal numbering range somewhere else, such as 04 or 06. They also believe that using personal numbers for revenue earning services is a valid usage. The proposals do little or nothing to alleviate consumer concerns and do nothing to remove high call charges.

In talking about ordinary mobile numbers charged at higher rates, RAG also seems to have missed the changes to mobile termination rates for all UK providers imposed by Ofcom from 1 May 2015 and from 1 April 2018, both as a result of Ofcom's three-yearly review of mobile termination rates.

Title: Re: Ofcom's changes to 070 numbers.
Post by Dave on Mar 12th, 2018 at 2:09pm
When Personal Numbers were introduced they were broadly to mobile numbers what 0845/0870 numbers were to geographic numbers.

However, organisations that used 0845/0870 didn't tend to use 070 also, and vice versa. So they weren't in fact used as a pair of 'virtual' landline and mobile numbers, as substitute for a real landline and mobile number pair. 0845/0870 numbers (certainly in the early days of their existence) tended to be used by large organisations and personal numbers were used by tradesmen, as well being throw-away number for placement in adverts in magazines and so on.

A telephone number is a point of contact. Traditionally, each particular telephone number has been associated with a particular destination, this being an end-point on the network, i.e. a telephone line (fixed or mobile). But when a caller rings a number they are often seeking to make contact with a particular person (or organisation) rather than a particular destination.

In the corporate world it is commonplace to have incoming numbers – points of contact – that are not intrinsically-linked to destination points. However, for personal telecommunications this change has still to occur, with people often giving out two points of contact – landline and mobile. In cases where a person has only one mode of contact (destination) then there is only one point of contact (number), meaning multiple points-of-contact do not exist.

I think that VoIP is likely to play an ever-bigger part in telecommunications in the future. A VoIP account has a single incoming number (point of contact) but is not linked to any particular destination. It is then down to the user to 'pick up' calls via whatever mode of telecommunications they wish to use at any particular moment.

Compare this to e-mail. E-mail never started out life as points-of-contact (e-mail addresses) being intrinsically-linked to particular destinations (clients connected to the Internet). It is the case that, like VoIP, it can potentially be configured to relate to a particular destination, but this is only insomuch as not configuring it for other destinations as well. For example, one could have an e-mail address where the account is only set-up on the computer at home and is never accessed from anywhere else. In practical terms, therefore, communications to that e-mail address can only (actually, 'are only ever') seen at the home address.

The crux of my point is that telephone numbers, like e-mail addresses have always been, should be a point of contact for which the user can pick-up anywhere, without the necessary involvement of the caller in achieving that connection (by selecting home, mobile or office number to call). This means diversification of incoming numbers and particular destinations.

Title: Re: Ofcom's changes to 070 numbers.
Post by SilentCallsVictim on Mar 12th, 2018 at 3:09pm
I am inclined to differ slightly with Dave (or maybe not, if I have missed his point.)

I would suggest that a landline number (01, 02, 03, 08, 09) is associated with a fixed point (on the "land"), be it a home or an office, and a mobile number (07) with a person.

Since the improvement in mobile coverage (commonly extending to indoors), and largely free international roaming,  which has taken place since personal numbers were introduced, there would seem to be little justification for the retention of 070 numbers for this purpose.

They will remain for the benefit of those who wish to re-route their incoming calls, at their own expense, but we wait to see if there will be a retained demand for this service.

Title: Re: Ofcom's changes to 070 numbers.
Post by Dave on Mar 15th, 2018 at 1:31pm
Traditionally, telephone numbers relate directly to end points on the network. A fixed telephone line's identity is its number, and it is at a fixed location. Similarly, a mobile phone has a particular identity, which is associated with the SIM card.

We all agree that, on the basis of the above, the numbering plan of 01/02 numbers being for fixed lines and 07 numbers (some excepted) being mobile-telephone 'lines'.

In both these cases, it is possible to route calls onwards with call diversion. This passes calls on to another PSTN number, for which the end user (the one who has set the diversion) must bear the cost of the diverted leg of the call.

In many (not all) practical circumstances the diversion (on the incoming number) can be set, modified or cancelled only from the respective telephone (endpoint). What this means is that in order to set, modify or cancel a diversion on a fixed line one will usually have to be present at the location of the line, and similarly to do likewise with a mobile telephone service, one will have to have the mobile phone with battery power and signal available.

Thus, calls always come in to the particular phone with diversion being something extra that can be set. In real terms, the call doesn't actually 'come in', of course, but in effect the diversion can be pictured in the mind as being just that.

By contrast, VoIP is different. A VoIP account has an incoming number but this number has no association with any particular end point (to which it 'comes in'). In this respect, e-mail addresses have always been the same, and this a good comparison to draw. An e-mail address isn't associated with any particular endpoint.

So, why should a telephone number be associated with a particular endpoint? The answer is that it doesn't have to be, although this is how telephony began and has grown up.

As the popularity of VoIP increases, as I think it will, the association of endpoints to particular incoming numbers (as identities) will tend away. In reality, the majority of VoIP providers are offering service with 01, 02 and 03 numbers, along with other 08 non-geographic numbers (I'm not sure about 09).

Compare the traditional notion of a number associated with endpoint and a number associated with a person (a person's VoIP account). The latter does everything the former does and more; thus, it follows that the reverse must also be true: the former is more restrictive than the latter. Or to put it another way: the functionality of the former is generally fully encompassed by the latter – the reason that the former is king is down to evolution. While on the one hand we might expect a natural tendency to VoIP, this will be countered by the might of the providers of conventional voice telephony.

A mobile telephone number is generally regarded as a personal point-of-contact, as opposed to a geographic number being for a fixed point on the land. But it still is associated with a particular endpoint, requiring connection to a particular network and particular hardware to be available. By contrast, VoIP is network-neutral and can be delivered on whole manner of different hardware – the prerequisite of association with endpoint does not apply.

The crux of my point is:
  • (Rhetorical question) Where might the increasing move to VoIP leave the numbering plan, in terms of having destination types classified by number prefix?
  • The need for a number to be associated with a particular location is likely to tend away with the growth of VoIP. After all, if a landline number is delivered to the end user by VoIP, the intricacies of diverting to a mobile do not apply – calls are received as data choose whether in a fixed location or mobile.

Title: Re: Ofcom's changes to 070 numbers.
Post by Ian01 on Aug 17th, 2018 at 11:50pm

Ofcom has decided to proceed with their plans as originally proposed, except the effective date will be 12 months after the final statement is published.

Ofcom has released a draft statement:

The fairtelecoms campaign briefing:

An article in the telegraph tomorrow:

Title: Re: Ofcom's changes to 070 numbers.
Post by Ian01 on Oct 6th, 2018 at 3:27pm

On 15 August 2018, Ofcom published their Draft Statement confirming their intention to proceed with the original proposal but with a twelve month implementation period, as mentioned above.

On 1 October 2018, Ofcom published their Final Statement confirming 1 October 2019 as the date for compliance.

Ofcom's Statement:

The fairtelecoms campaign news release:

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