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Q1: What is an MBI, MIN and MDN?

A1: The MIN Block Identifier (MBI) is defined as the first 6 digits of a block of 10,000 MINs used to uniquely identify a wireless service provider. The Mobile Directory Number (MDN) is defined as the number that is dialed to reach a mobile subscriber. The Mobile Identification Number (MIN) is defined in ANSI TIA/EIA-553 as the 10-digit number that is used to identify a mobile station (and its HLR) over the radio interface.

Q2: Why was MBI Administration undertaken?

A2: Prior to separation, AMPS, CDMA and TDMA service providers perform registration, call processing, provisioning, customer care and billing based upon a single number---the MIN. Traditionally, the MIN has also been programmed by service providers within the North American Numbering Plan (NANP) serving area as the 10-digit Mobile Directory Number (MDN).

Given changes in the administration of the NANP, the wireless industry found it necessary to administer MINs separately to meet its unique requirements. With the advent of capabilities such as Local Number Portability and Thousands-Block Number Pooling, separation of the MDN and MIN is necessary. In today’s post-separation environment, mobile subscribers now require two types of numbers: a Mobile Directory Number (MDN) and a Mobile Station Identifier (MSID).

The MDN is the dialable NANP telephone number and is portable in a service provider portability environment. The MSID is non-portable and non-dialable. The MSID can take the format of a 15-digit International Mobile Station Identifier (IMSI) or a 10-digit MIN. MBI Administration addresses the management of the 6-digit MBI associated with the 10-digit MIN format MSID.

Q3: What happens if a Wireless Service Provider (WSP) chooses not to participate in MBI?

A3: To eliminate service quality and billing issues, two different WSPs cannot use the same MINs. Multiple WSPs using the same MINs can result in instances of the wrong customer being billed for service or intended features not being available to customers who ordered those features. By registering its MBI blocks with the MBI Administrator, a WSP can ensure the blocks it is using will not be assigned to another carrier.

Q4: How do I get started with MBI Administration?

A4: The first thing a service provider needs to do is ensure that the MBI Administrator has the proper address and Contact information so that the Initial Setup Package can be sent to the correct company Contact.

Once the service provider receives the Initial Setup Package, it must complete the following documents:

1.      MBI Service Account Registration: Complete this form to set up an initial Service Account.

2.      User Agreement: Carefully read the information in the User Agreement and make sure an officer of your corporation signs it. Be sure to include a copy of a license certification to prove you are a license holder.

3.      Optional Sub-account: Depending upon how your company wants to set up administration of MBIs, you may find it necessary to create multiple Sub-accounts under the main Service Account. You will need to fill out this optional form to define the Sub-accounts.

4.      Invoice and Payment: The fees listed on the invoice are one-time only fees that share the system development costs among the service providers participating in the MBI program. There are no recurring or monthly fees.

Q5: How do I learn more about MBI Administration?

A5: For other questions about MBI Administration, please refer to the MBI Administration web site, send an email to mbiadmin@solusur.com, or call the MBI Administration Help Desk for more information. Another excellent resource for MBI Administration is the "MBI Assignment Guidelines and Procedures" document, which can be found on the MBI Administration Web site’s MBI Oversight Council (MOC) homepage.

Q6: What is the MOC?

A6: The MBI Oversight Council (MOC) is an industry group that develops and maintains Guidelines for the national administration of MIN Blocks. The MBI Oversight Council provides a forum to 1) Maintain and modify the MBI Guidelines and Procedures, 2) Resolve issues referred to the MBI Administrator but not resolved to the satisfaction of the applicant or the MBI Administrator, and 3) Request that the MBI Administrator perform assignment audits of service providers. The MOC is an open forum in which any interested party (e.g., industry representatives, regulatory representatives and industry associations) may participate.

 Meeting times and documents are posted to the MOC homepage at the MBI Administration website.

Q7: How does a non-LNP WSP ensure that it is assigned MBIs that are associated with its NPA-NXX assignments?

A7: In order for a non-LNP WSP to ensure that it is assigned the MBIs that are associated with its NPA-NXX assignments, the WSP must apply for an MBI and specify the assignment that it requires. If the NPA-NXX was recently assigned, MBI Administration may ask that the WSP provide a NANPA Part 3 application to show that the WSP has been assigned the NPA-NXX.

Q8: Is there an appeal process if there is a dispute?

A8: Yes, and the Administrator and Applicants or Assignees will make reasonable, good faith efforts to resolve such disagreements among themselves, consistent with the guidelines, prior to pursuing any appeal. Appeals may include, but are not limited to, one or more of the following options:

1.      With regard to the administration of MBIs, the Applicant or Assignee will have the opportunity to resubmit the matter to the Administrator with additional information for reconsideration.

2.      Issues referred to the Administrator, but not resolved to the satisfaction of the Applicant, Assignee or Administrator may be referred to the MBI Oversight Council for final resolution.

The Administrator will keep reports on any resolution resulting from the above options on file, the content of which will be mutually agreed upon by the involved parties. At a minimum, the report will contain the final disposition of the appeal.

The Applicant/Assignee or the Administrator will refer guideline interpretation, clarification, or MBI management questions, associated with an appeal, to the MBI Oversight Council for final resolution. Unless otherwise mutually agreed to by the parties, these questions will be submitted in a generic manner protecting the identity of the appellant. All documentation resulting from these activities will be kept on file by the Administrator. There will be no charge for a resubmission of a denied application if it is appealed within 20 US business days of the denial.

Q9: How are MBI Users informed of process changes?

A9: Any process changes will result in changes to the "MBI Assignment Guidelines and Procedures" document. This document can be referenced by WSPs and is posted on the MBI Administration Web site on the MOC homepage. Users receive notice of Guideline changes through the Quarterly Update broadcast message sent by the Administrator or by participating in the MOC.  

Q10: Who oversees the MBI Administration function?

A10: The MBI Oversight Limited Liability Corporation (LLC) is responsible for monitoring the MBI Administration contract.

Q11: What are the various service levels for MBI Administration? 

A11: A variety of service level measurements are in place to control and ensure high quality service is given to WSPs participating in MBI Administration. The MBI Administrator maintains the following service levels:

· Help Desk Business Hours: 8:30AM - 5:30PM Central, Monday through Friday. 
· Validate and respond to all applications (with complete payment) within 5 business days.
· Process all applications on a first-come, first-serve basis.
· Handle all issues for all MBI customers on an equal and consistent basis.

Q12: How are MBI applications submitted to the Administrator?

A12: MBI Applications must be submitted by an authorized Contact for the Company (an MBI User ID is required). The MBI Applications may be sent either on-line via the Web site system, or off-line via a hard copy application form.

On-line Submission: From the MBI public Web site, use your personal User ID and Password to log on to the MBI secure Web site. Then, from your "User Home" page, follow the appropriate links to complete an application.

Off-line Submission: From the MBI public Web site, go to the MBI Application Forms link, download the appropriate form. After completing the form, send it to MBI Administration via email. Note: All general MBI Application forms require a Company ID and your personal User ID.

Initial Setup: If your company has not yet been set up with an MBI Administration account, click on the New Service Accounts Package link of the Home page for information.  You can download the forms from the MBI Administrator page>Administrator Documents or contact the MBI Administration Help Desk.

Q13: What is the difference between a Service Account and a Sub-account?

A13: There is flexibility built into the Service Account structure allowing WSPs several options for administering their MBI resources.

Every WSP is required to set up at least one Service Account with at least one User Contact to support MBI administrative functions.

Sub-accounts may be set up under a defined Service Account. All Contacts that have been defined under the Service Account will have authority to request, return or transfer MBIs among all of the Sub-accounts associated with a Service Account. Additional Service Accounts and/or Sub-accounts may be defined based upon geography, resellers, company-specific administration requirements or a variety of other reasons. One of the criteria to consider when setting up Service and Sub-Accounts is the 60% utilization requirement, which requires LNP capable WSPs to have reached a 60% utilization rate on MBIs in a given service or sub-account before any new MBIs can be assigned to that service or sub-account. Exceptions to this requirement are listed in Section 6.3.1 and Section 6.3.2 of MBI Assignment Guidelines and Procedures.

Q14: Can you give examples on how I may set up my Service Account/Sub-account structure for my company?

A14: What follows are several examples (keep in mind that these are just examples of possible ways of setting up a Service Account structure):

Example #1: A WSP has an operation in five states with a centralized number administration group that handles all the needs for the company. There are five separate administrators who each have responsibility for a single state. In this instance, it may make sense to set up a single Service Account with five different Sub-accounts each corresponding to a different state. There would be five different Contacts set up who could back up each other in case the primary Contact for the state is out of the office.

Example #2: A large national WSP has number administration divided into ten regions, each having a staff of five to support each region. In this case, it may make sense for the WSP to set up ten different Service Accounts. Within each of the Service Accounts there could be Sub-accounts defined for each one of the states or cities. The five users would be set up as contacts under their respective regional Service Account. They would be able to maintain only those areas assigned under their regional Service Account. 

Example #3: A small WSP located in one geographic area has only a few MBIs to request from the Administrator. In this case, the WSP may need to set up only one main Service Account and can assign all its MBIs under that Service Account.

Q15: What are shared MBIs and how do I obtain them?

A15: A “shared” MBI is an MBI in which multiple carriers are assigned and have implemented MINs in blocks smaller than the full 10,000 MINs within an MBI. In specific instances, outlined in MBI Administration Guidelines and Procedures Annex G, WSPs can request MOC approval to have a shared MBI range assigned to them by the Administrator.

Q16: What are the cost elements for participating in MBI Administration?

A16: There is a for registering for Service Accounts and Sub-accounts. There is also a fee for each application for a new MBI. Additional fees are charged for manually handling an application by mail, fax, or electronic spreadsheet. In addition, the WSP is responsible for any fees incurred by the MBI Administrator as a result of a returned check or credit card payment.

Q17: How are OCNs used in the MBI Administration process?

A17: OCNs were used during the Grandfathering Period to perform edit checks to ensure that WSPs grandfather those MBIs that are assigned to them. In addition, OCNs were used during the Pre-population process to pre-populate MBI assignments into the WSP's Service Accounts and Sub-accounts, if desired.

Q18: When I first set up my company, why do I need to include a Call Sign?

A18: A WSP will have to provide at least one Call Sign (as specified in the FCC Universal Licensing System) in order to show that the WSP is a licensed facilities-based carrier.

Q19: How was Solusur selected to be the MBI Administrator ?

A19: An MBI Selection Committee, comprised of a wide range of wireless network licensees, issued a Request for Proposal in December 2017. Proposals were submitted in February 2018, and Solusur LLC was selected as MBI Administrator in September 2018 by the Selection Committee.
Solusur LLC started providing services as MBI Administrator on February, 1st, 2019.

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