New mobile subscribers will get mobile numbers with a different prefix after service providers exhausted the 07** prefix.
Safaricom and Airtel have already applied for the new 01** prefix and will roll out new lines starting with 0110, 0111 and 0100, 0101, 0102 respectively.
Safaricom will roll out two million numbers and Airtel three million. Telkom Kenya has not applied for the prefix as the telco awaits regulatory approval for its proposed merger with Airtel Kenya.
“The move to release the new series of numbers is necessitated by increased demand for SIM cards, mobile data and machine-to-machine communication, and other emerging technologies that require telecommunication numbers,” said Communications Authority of Kenya Director General Francis Wangusi.
Mr Wangusi said the regulator had provided for 100 million lines under the 07**- prefix which had been exhausted due to multiple registration of SIM cards for cell phones as well as new Internet-enabled devices introduced in the market.