I have had a few customers ask how to prepare for the new area code overlay for Indiana (beginning October 17, 2016). Specifically, they have asked how the change will impact their business and their current system configuration. Here are a few tips to help you be ready for the change:
Why do we need the Area Code Overlay?
With the overwhelming growth in Indianapolis, the demand for new telephone numbers exceeds the number of existing numbers available in the 317 area code. Introducing the 463 area code will allow for more numbers to be created in the region served by 317 (e.g., Indianapolis and most of its suburbs). This "area code overlay" will not change your existing area code. It will simply allow for more new telephone numbers to be created.
What will change?
When calling a number within the 317 region, dial all ten digits: 317 + phone number. As of October 17, you must dial all ten digits or your call will not be completed (a recording will instruct you to hang up and dial again). As new telephone numbers are requested, new lines or services may be assigned numbers using the 463 area code. All calls made between the area codes 317 and 463 must be placed using the ten-digit telephone number (317 or 463 plus the seven-digit telephone number).
What won’t change?
Your telephone number, including current area code, won't change nor will the price of a call, coverage area, or other rates and services. So whatever is considered a local call now will still be a local call. Continue to dial 1 + area code + telephone number (eleven digits) for calls to area codes other than 317 and 463. In an emergency simply dial 911. If 211, 311, 411, 511, 611, 711 or 811 services are currently available in your community, no extra digits are needed.
How can I prepare?
Be sure to reprogram any equipment that stores frequently called local numbers, so that it dials all ten digits. This includes life safety systems or medical devices, PBXs, fax machines, dial-up modems, alarm and security systems or gates, speed dial programs, mobile phones, and call forwarded numbers (such as an after hours answering service). Each of these will need to be reprogrammed with the ten-digit phone number.
If you have any questions or feel you may need help in making certain you are prepared for the new 10-digit dialing format, drop us a line or give us a call at 317-595-7863.