This is coming as the sole provider of toll free and vanity number services in the country, Alpha Technologies Limited and leading switching services provider, InterSwitch Limited, have confirmed participation in the summit.
Confirming this development, Coordinator of ICTAfrica, the organisers, Don Pedro Aganbi, while disclosing that over 150 key decision makers are expected at the event, said the Chief Executive of InterSwitch Limited, Mr. Mitchell Elegbe, is expected to lead discussions on “ATM’s cum e-Payment’s in Nigeria and the shape of things to come”, whereas Alpha Technologies would exhibit their innovative toll free 0800 and non-toll free 0700 numbers, also known as SMAT numbers.
Speaking on the summit with the theme, “Seamless ICT Integration in Post-Consolidation Era,” Managing director, Alpha Technologies, Mrs. Maggie Peters, revealed that the company would also stage a raffle draw for participants at the summit where winners would get free special SMAT numbers.
The firm, she said, would print for the winners a set of cards bearing the SMAT numbers to brand the winners, adding that SMAT or vanity numbers, are telephone numbers where the letters associated with the number digits on the telephone.
, spell a name or word of value which the subscribers feels is memorable enough to associate his telephone number contacts with.
“What happens is that instead of reeling out the 11 digit numbers as in the case of GSM numbers, the subscriber hooks on the 0-700 or 0-800 SMAT numbers in combination with his name or business name. With SMAT numbers, a subscriber’s number becomes for instance 0-700 Adewale or 0700 ABC,” she cited.
Mrs Peters equally explained the difference between the 0-700 and the 0-800 numbers, saying that the former is a non-toll free platform while the later is a toll free line.
“What this means is that under the 0-700 platform the callers pay the normal call charges while the0-800 are meant for companies or individuals who require volume of enquiries on their products or activities and so the call cost is reversed and paid not by the caller but the company or individual who owns the number,” she said.
The SMAT numbers, she said, have advantages of improving communication accessibility as much as permitting number portability, enhances image and makes for easy networking for companies with large network branches.The theme for this year’s FITS is “seamless ICT integration in post - Consolidation Era” was chosen to enable stakeholders review progress made in IT integration post consolidation and to chart a new course going into the future.