Wednesday, September 08, 2010

SIM Card Registration: Consumers now keen, as operators engage dealers

Apathy over the registration of Subscribers Identification Module (SIM) cards is beginning to wean as more telecom consumers are now eager to get their SIMs registered.

This is coming as operators have engaged some dealers in an effort to meet up with the six months deadline given to them through the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) in July by the House Committee on Communications to complete registration of over 78 million SIM cards in circulation.

This development came with more subscribers indicating interest and asking questions on where and how to go about registering their SIM cards across the networks.

Investigations by ITRealms Online revealed that the operators are now engaging dealers in order to extend the exercise to the crannies by taking the course of action to big corporate organisations and churches.

It was further gathered that these operators appointed some of their partners, who in turn employ temporary staff to ensure that this exercise is a success.

Last Sunday, for instance, at St. Jude’s Catholic parish, Mafoluku-Oshodi in Lagos, staff of telco’s dealers, especially from Apple Tree mounted two tables at the two entrance gates of the church during most masses in order to register MTN subscribers who lined up for the exercise en-masse.

The two operators of the Digital Data Capturing machines allocated to the parish for the last Sunday registration exercise, Messrs Kayode and Yomi, confirmed to ITRealms Online that they were from Apple Tree Nigeria Limited and have been around since the second mass which ended at about 8.30am and would stay through to the last mass, which ended at about 1pm.

They also said that the exercise went well as the turn-out has been encouraging.

Speaking to the ITRealms Online, a lady who described herself as the Managing Director, Apple Tree, who did not want her name in prints, said they have staff well equipped to do the registration.

She explained that corporate organisations as well as the churches and mosques invite them to come occasionally when they have their members intact to register their SIM cards and they register across the networks, namely MTN, Zain, Etisalat, and Glo, to name a few.

ITRealms Online recalled that a few weeks ago, there was apathy by telecom consumers in the country as they were not keen about the exercise, but this has changed as at last week with more subscribers registering their SIM cards.

Meanwhile, the confusion that heralded the exercise based on the kind of questions asked by various operators via their dealers are yet to be cohesively structured.

Even as initially, some touts took advantage of lack of awareness on the SIM registration to charge unassuming telecom subscribers between N50 and N500, collecting two passport photos and filling of manual forms with the intention to register them.

ITREALMS Online ... delivering news for ICT4D

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