Proposed Rationing Of Toll-free Phone Numbers.

The stock of available toll free numbers is now so depleted that insiders say government agencies may implement another rationing of the 800, 888, 877, and 866 pre-fixes within months. Rumors of a rationing program have subscribers scrambling to obtain numbers, creating an even more limited supply.

The federal government rationed coveted 800 numbers in 1995 until the new 888 pre-fix was introduced a year later. But the U.S. supply of available 1-800 numbers, dwindling for years, is again nearly depleted. Toll free numbers enable callers to reach businesses, organizations, and non-profits without having to pay for the call. This marketing tool has been so successful that the available 1-800 numbers are decreasing while demand is growing at unprecedented rates.

The force behind the demand for toll-free numbers is not only the traditional business use: a growing market is comprised of residential customers. If rationing is implemented, obtaining a new toll free number will be more difficult than ever before.

The popularity of the 1-800 number, launched in 1967, led the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to add the new pre-fixes 888 and 877 in the mid-1990s. When availability of those numbers plummeted, 866 was added in 2000 to overcome the shortage. Since then, there have been no new pre-fixes introduced and supplies are rapidly shrinking.

There are no immediate plans to add another toll free pre-fix. In fact, the reserved 855 pre-fix numbers are not expected to be released for several years. Meanwhile, toll free phone numbers have become a staple of the business world and demand is consistently rising.

Industry insiders are recommending that anyone wishing to obtain a toll free number secure one immediately. There are an average of 8,000 new toll free numbers registered each day. With a limited number of numerical possibilities, the finite supply is nearly expended but numbers can safely and rapidly be obtained through providers such as AT&T, Verizon, or Qwest.

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Automatic Number Spare Release at 11PM

Users who are waiting to reserve a number that will soon be returned to spare now know what time a given number will automatically spare. With the implementation of SMS/800 Release 16.0, numbers scheduled for automatic spare are released at 11 pm Central.

Previously, the system spared numbers throughout the day as their waiting periods expired, but users interested in reserving the number once it was spare never knew exactly when the number would be available. In response to this uncertainty, users often sent repeated queries on a number on the day it was supposed to go spare.

To help users get the numbers they wanted and to help alleviate system congestion, the SMS/800 Management Team worked with the Resp Orgs and the Federal Communications Commission to make the change and set a regular sparing schedule.

Users can go to the REL screen to verify the established time for sparing numbers.

The 11pm release also does not affect numbers manually spared by users.  Numbers directly spared by the users, including numbers spared with the Multi-Dial Number Spare feature, will be spared immediately.

Toll-free Fax Numbers Save Paper, They Go To E-mail.

Going Green? Then join millions of toll free phone service subscribers in the latest trend and save paper by getting fax messages sent to e-mail. You’ll save money and the planet all at the same time.

Among the many benefits of signing on for toll-free service are the various features available from service providers such as Qwest, and Verizon. Calls can be routed to an any other phone line and faxes can be routed to email. These types of technological conveniences were just dreams a few years ago–now they are affordable realities. These state-of-the-art features are not available from most typical phone service providers.

When choosing toll free service, subscribers can select from a menu of services—phone calls routed to land lines, faxes, emails etc. and a variety of other features that suit their needs and their budget. Once a number is assigned, it stays with the owner permanently. If a company grows or moves locations, the numbers goes with them, safeguarding the connection to all their customers.

Some service providers such as Qwest and Verizon allow fax messages to go straight to email. This convenience saves costly paper and immediately transports the message to the business owner or company representative. This type of service is good for customer relations, saves pricey paper fees, and saves the environment.

Saving paper is just one benefit of signing up for unique toll free phone service features. Toll free service has become a necessity for successful businesses, organizations, and not-for-profits. According to reports, 98% of Americans use toll free numbers regularly. Businesses can see increases of as much as 600 percent if an advertisement includes a 1-800 number. Toll free numbers increase market reach, enhance customer confidence, establish recognition of brand image, and sustain businesses during times of a weak economy.

Toll-free 1(800) Home Phone Numbers?

A new trend in the use of 800 numbers is drastically increasing the number of subscribers to toll free service. The new users?  Families.

Personal use of toll free phone service has skyrocketed in the past five years. Adults are now routinely providing elderly parents on a fixed income with an 800 number. Parents are hooking their kids up with toll free service so they can keep in constant communication. And experts say this trend is not a passing fancy. Toll free service for personal use is here to stay.

Toll free numbers enable callers to reach businesses, organizations, and non-profits without having to pay for the call. This trend has been so successful that the available 1-800, 888, 877, and 866 numbers are decreasing while demand is growing at unprecedented rates. In fact, an average of 8,000 new subscribers sign up for toll free numbers every single day.

Toll free service has gone through several incarnations over the past four decades. First, 800 numbers were primarily used by big business. This is still the case—almost all of the Fortune 500 companies have an 800 number. Then, toll free service became more affordable and easy to obtain, causing a surge in use by small businesses, online companies, and not-for-profits. Now, personal use is all the rage.

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and the 800 Service Management System (SMS/800) both report that personal use of toll free numbers is on the rise. The popularity of the 1-800 number, introduced in the late 1960s, led the FCC to add the new pre-fixes 888 and 877 in the mid-1990s. When availability of those numbers became scarce in 2000, the 866 pre-fix was added to overcome the shortage. Now, eight years later, the supply is nearly depleted.

With supplies of available toll free numbers plummeting, experts are recommending that anyone wishing to obtain a toll free number secure one immediately. When obtaining numbers for use by children and elderly relatives, it is especially important that subscribers deal with reliable service providers. Companies like AT&T and Verizon quickly secure a number for any subscriber, offer low rates, and reliable fiber optic connections.

Where Are All The 1(800) Numbers Going?

Insiders are calling it the perfect storm. Toll free phone service has hit all all-time high in popularity. The 800 numbers are so successful that once obtained, they are rarely retired. And the federal government has not released reserved numbers intended to alleviate the shortage. Supplies will soon run out.

So, where are all the 800 numbers going? Industry experts say toll free service is now a staple of any type of business. Small business owners, following the lead of the CEO’s of nearly half the Fortune 500 companies, are securing toll free vanity phone numbers as a strategic marketing tool. Personal use of toll free numbers has skyrocketed as parents secure an 800 number to stay in touch with their teens, college-aged children, and elderly parents.

More than two-thirds of the available supply of 800, 888, 877, and 866 numbers are taken and millions of new subscribers are registering every year. Business owners who wait much longer to obtain a number might find themselves out of luck. In a competitive market, a toll free number is a valuable commodity for every business.

Federal agencies have been cracking down on the illegal sale of 800 numbers and the hoarding, or stockpiling, of numbers by service providers and subscribers. This oversight is intended to help free up some of the numbers for new subscribers.

According to the FCC, toll free numbers “have proven successful for businesses and are increasingly popular for personal use.” Reports indicate that a toll free number listed in an ad can increase response by 600 percent and word of mouth referrals rise by 200 percent. With 98 percent of American adults regularly using toll free numbers, businesses securing an 800 number gain a strong competitive edge.

The popularity of the 1-800 number, introduced in the late 1960s, led the FCC to add the new pre-fixes 888 and 877 in the mid-1990s. When availability of those numbers became scarce in 2000, the 866 pre-fixes were added to overcome the shortage. Now, eight years later, the stockpile is once again low despite the recent mass deactivation of unused 800 numbers.

Experts say the demand drastically outweighs supply and advise that the only way to guarantee obtaining a toll free number is to get one immediately.

Why Is It So Hard To Get An 800 Phone Number?

With the fixed amount of available 800 numbers shrinking fast, subscribers who waited to secure toll free service are now learning why it is so difficult to obtain a number.

Industry insiders say the soaring popularity of toll free service combined with the failure of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to release additional numbers have created a tight supply of 800 numbers in heavy demand.

Once used primarily by big businesses, 800, 888, 877, and 866 toll free numbers are now popular with small businesses, charities, churches, and for personal use. Toll free service has become a staple of all successful businesses. Demand has grown quickly but the supply of numbers has remained stagnant.

Adding to the problem, insiders say 800 numbers retired back to the main database for someone else to use are scarce. Toll free numbers have such an extreme positive impact on any company, that it is rare for business owners to cancel their numbers. A plea for unused numbers to be released offered a brief reprieve earlier this year. But within weeks, the supply dropped again as thousands of new subscribers invested in toll free service each day.

Toll free service has a long history. 800 numbers were introduced in 1967. By the 1980s, nearly half of all long distance calls would be toll free. Today, 98 percent of adults say they regularly use toll free numbers. Meanwhile, the supply of 800 numbers are at an all-time low. More than two-thirds of the available numbers are taken and there are no immediate plans by the FCC to introduce a new pre-fix.

Telecommunications experts recommend that anyone wishing to obtain a toll free number secure one immediately. There are an average of 8,000 new toll free numbers registered each day. With a limited number of numerical possibilities, the supply is nearly expended. Advisors say the most effective and affordable way to obtain a toll free number before supplies run out is to contact a reliable toll free service provider. A few examples are Verizon or Qwest. These providers can quickly assist subscribers in finding a quality toll free number.

Your Number vs. 1 (800) Number: Round One

The popularity of 1-800 numbers is surpassing that of local phone numbers at rates exceeding industry expectations.

Toll free service has increased at such a fast pace that the supply of available 1-800 numbers is at an all-time low. According to the Federal Communications Commission 1-800, 888, 877 and 866 numbers are increasingly popular for businesses and for personal use. With no plans for the addition of new numbers, the existing supply is quickly depleting.

Experts say that consumers recognize that many of the advantages of 1-800 numbers outweigh standard local phone service. Toll free service is becoming increasingly common with parents wishing to keep in close contact with children and teens. Businesses with a 1-800 number see increases in sales, word of mouth referrals and a decrease in product returns. Standard local phone service does not provide any of these advantages.

The value of a 1-800 number has become a necessity for any business. Toll free numbers allow callers to reach businesses, organizations and even friends and relatives without being charged for the call. A toll free number lends credibility to any business, enhances customer service, and increases customer confidence. There are no additional installations needed for a 1-800 number and the calls can be routed to any cell phone, landline, or fax. Studies show that sales can double and word of mouth referrals can increase by as much as 200% making toll free service indispensible for business.

Toll free service has been available for 40 years, but has skyrocketed in popularity in the past decade. 1-800 numbers were introduced in 1967. By the 1980s, half of all long distance calls were through 800 numbers. A decade later, the FCC added two new pre-fixes, 888 and 877, to address the shortage of available 800 numbers. Then with the supply continuing to drop while demand increased, 866 numbers were added in the year 2000.

Industry insiders are recommending that anyone wishing to obtain a toll free number secure one immediately. With a limited number of toll free possibilities, the finite supply is nearly expended. It is important that subscribers deal with reliable service providers. Companies like AT&T and Verizon quickly secure a number for any subscriber, offer low rates, and reliable fiber optic connections.