In a move to avoid confusion and to further protect customers, Comreg is making two important changes to NGNs that will both be in place by 2022.
- Geo-Linking Condition: From 1 December 2019, a call to 1850, 1890, 0818 or 076 NGN now costs no more than the cost of calling a landline number. This means that if landline calls are included in your “bundle of call minutes” then NGN calls will also be “in bundle”. No separate charge will apply for any NGN call (unless you have used up your bundle of call minutes).
- NGN Consolidation: From 1 January 2022, the five NGN ranges will be reduced to two. 1850, 1890, and 076 ranges will be withdrawn and the 1800 (Freephone) and 0818 range will remain. This 3 year period is to allow organisations that use NGNs time to prepare.
For further information about the decision, click the link to go to the Comreg press release.
ComReg conducted an extensive review of NGNs, including two public consultations, and found that the majority of consumers cannot tell the different NGNs apart and do not know, or cannot estimate, the retail charges for calling different NGNs.
Many consumers think calling NGNs is expensive and others believe that service providers (i.e. the organisations that are using NGNs as contact numbers) are making money from customers dialling these NGNs.
The measures are being introduced to address the cost of using NGNs and tackle confusion among consumers about the differences between the different NGNs. These changes will create an affordable and simplified NGN platform. They will reduce confusion and build a greater understanding of NGNs to ensure both you and your end-users have greater confidence using these numbers.
For more information on Irish phone number ranges, please find the following articles: