Smokey Barn News
Saturday, February 28, 2015
Robertson County, Middle Tenn.
Midnight Tonight (615) Rule Kicks In: What Do I Need To Do?
Smokey’s going to give you the short version first, then we’ll do the long version for folks with more sophisticated equipment after that.
First, if all you have is a cell phone or a land line, all it means is that when you call your next door neighbor (like you have done since 1972), their seven digit phone number (all by itself) will no longer do the trick, now you’ll have to dial the area code first, for us it’s 615. If your neighbor’s number is 513-9844 it will now be (615) 513-9844.
That’s pretty much it, in a nutshell, you must dial the area code first from now on. The only thing left would be your contact list in your cell phone. If you stored phone numbers manually without putting in the area code those numbers will no longer work. If your mother lives in the 615 area code and you want her phone to ring you must dial 615 first.
Most numbers make their way into our phones because someone calls us, if we like them, we add their number to our contacts, in that case the area code is automatically stored with their number. The only numbers that could be affected are the ones that you manually entered yourself. If you put in the area code each time you manually entered a number yourself, you’re good but if not the next time you tell your phone to “call Mom” you may hear the following message from the phone company; “Please enter the area code before calling this number.”
So there it is, in the worst case scenario, you’ll need to update a few contacts and you might get a recording telling you to enter the area code once in a while.
It’s also important to note that there will be NO change in the fees you pay to make phone calls. If your mother lives in the 615 area code, whatever you pay now to call her will stay the same, in fact, the charge will stay the same, no matter where she lives.
We will also note that your area code will NOT be changing. The phone company is simply running out of new 615 numbers to give out to new customers so they have added a new area code to our area, 629. Now our area will now be offering both 615 and 629 area codes. That’s why we all have to start entering the area code to make a call.
What will remain the same?
• Your telephone number, including current area code, will NOT change.
• The price of a call, coverage area, or other rates and services will not change due to the overlay.
• A local call now will remain a local call regardless of the number of digits dialed.
• You will continue to dial 1+ area code + telephone number for all long distance calls.
• You can still dial just three digits to reach 911.
• If 211, 311, 411, 511, 611, 711 or 811 are currently available in your community you will still dial these codes with just three digits.
Now for the technical stuff:
Most automated calling services configured into alarm or medical service devices have probably been updated already but if you have manually programmed a device yourself, you may want to check to be sure the area code(s) have been added.
Who’s making the change? The Tennessee Regulatory Authority (TRA)
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