Airtel Kenya will soon get 01** prefix once approved by the Communication Authority of Kenya

Airtel is the second largest mobile network operator in terms of subscriber base in Kenya. Airtel trails behind Safaricom and is closely followed behind by Telkom Kenya. It is easy to distinguish which carrier a telephone number belongs to, based on its National Destination Code (NDC.)

In Kenya, 070**,071**,072**,074**,079** all belong to Safaricom. Airtel Kenya runs the 073**, 078** and part of 075** that were left behind by Essar’s Yu. Telkom Kenya runs the 077**, together with all the landline numbers like 020*** from back in the day. Equity Bank runs Equitel as a Virtual Mobile Network on Airtel’s infrastructure under the 076** NDC.

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Clearly, Airtel for its size, is a little squeezed. The telco, according to a source, is getting new NDCs since they have already exhausted their 07xx prefixes. The new ones that will be allocated to Airtel are:

  • 0100
  • 0101
  • 0102

The new prefixes awarded to Airtel are odd since they are not the 07xx prefixes that we are used to with mobile lines in Kenya. The new prefixes are awaiting  Communications of Authority approval so it will be a while till we see SIM cards with these new SIM cards being sold everywhere.

UPDATE

On August 26th, 2019, Airtel is officially selling the new phone numbers through their usual Airtel Shop and AirtelMoney agents. The new lines are 4G enabled so users will be able to access Airtel’s ever-growing 4G network across the country.