Niles not part of first wave of cell phone number portability

Published 11:13 pm Monday, December 8, 2003

By By MARCIA STEFFENS / Niles Daily Star
NILES -- There are pin numbers to get into your ATM account and to get a cash advance from your credit card. if you forget your social security number you are really in trouble.
There is your address and your home phone, and also your cell phone number. And if you are frustrated and switch carriers -- there is a new cell phone number to remember.
But not any more.
The Federal Communications Commission ruled for those you now want only one phone and one bill, you can transfer your home number to your wireless number. And your number is yours, whether you were with Verizon or Centennial, is your coverage areas overlap.
The decision to allow the transfer of home numbers to cell phones for people living in the 100 most-populous metropolitan areas, recently went to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, but the opposition was denied.
Presently in this area, only switches between Verizon and T-Mobile are available. His business handles those two services along with Nextel and Sprint.
He said he received a "lot of calls and some disappointment." Ge doesn't feel though that waiting until May, 2004, when additional areas will be able to make the switches, is a bad thing.
Dropping your home line and replacing it with a cell line really makes sense, he added.
Pockrandt himself recently eliminated his own home phone line. "I expect that in five years local phone companies will see a huge decrease. The convenience and cost are becoming equal -- between land and cell lines."
Even "e-mail can be sent by cell phone," he added. "It is quickly becoming the device of the future."
The Niles paramedics love their Nextel phones, Pockrandt said. As two-way radios, the emergency personnel are instantly connected with the Michigan State Police and local law enforcement agencies.