Prefix For All Nigerian Networks 2024

How do I differentiate between MTN number and airtel number? How do I know if a number is GLO, MTN, or Airtel? What number does MTN start with? These are some of the most frequently asked questions about mobile networks in Nigeria and other parts of the world.

So, we made our research and come up with accurate answers which we will reveal in this article.

What Number Does Mtn Start With?

MTN has different prefixes, which means your MTN line can start with different numbers. The first generation of MTN sim cards began with 0803 before the prefix was no longer available in the market. The next generation of MTN sim cards started with 0816 before adding 0703 and 0706 to their prefixes.

The trend continues until we have 0903 and 0906. Right now the latest generation of MTN sim cards starts with 091.

So, in a nutshell, your MTN number can start with 0803…, 0703…, 0903…, 0806…, 0706…, 0813…, 0810…, 0814…, 0816, 0903, 0906… and 091…

What do Airtel numbers begin with?

Like MTN, Airtel has different codes or prefixes meaning Airtel lines can start with different numbers. Your airtel number might start with 0701 while another begins with 0702 due to the different prefixes.

The first set of Airtel SIM cards in Nigeria started with 0802 before moving to 0808, and 0708. The latest generation of airtel SIM cards currently available in the market starts with 0902, 0907, and 0901.

In summary, your airtel number can start with 0802, 0808, 0701, 0708, 0702, 0902, 0907, and 0901.

What do Glo numbers begin with?

We normally identify Glo numbers with the 0805 or 0807 codes some years ago but that has changed as events unfold. Glo now has different prefixes, thereby making it hard to know when a Glo number calls.

Luckily, there is a slight difference between Glo prefixes and other networks. Hence, your Glo number can begin with 0805, 0905, 0811, 0815, 0705, 0807 and 0915

What do 9mobile numbers begin with?

Like every other mobile network provider above, 9mobile numbers don’t have a specific prefix meaning they can start with different numbers.

Your first four 9mobile numbers could be 0809 while others are 0909. Nonetheless, all 9mobile sim cards should start with any of the following codes: 0809, 0909, 0817, 0818, and 0908.

Unfamiliar Telecommunication Companies In Nigeria

Almost all phone users in Nigeria know MTN, Glo, 9mobile, and Airtel, but only a few can boast of knowing Ntel, Smile, Spectranet, MainOne, and VDT Communication.

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Since Spectranet, MainOne and VDT communications are strictly internet service providers, let’s discuss Ntel which supports calls and internet connections.


Does the name ring a bell? Well, that’s because Ntel is somehow connected to the defunct NITEL communication.

The Nigerian Telecommunications Limited (NITEL) used to be the only telephone service provider in Nigeria until the country’s communications commission permitted new firms into the telecommunications industry in 1992.

Hence, MTN took advantage of the decision to become a mainstay and the most effective mobile network service provider in the country.

However, so many events transpired between NITEL and the Nigerian government which led to the sale of NITEL and Mtel’s assets to NATCOM for $252 million in 2015.

A few months after the end of NITEL, the Nigeria Telecom Company (Ntel) was launched In April (of the same year) to replace the NITEL.

So, NTEL is seen as the reincarnation of the NITEL network providers in Nigeria. Meanwhile, that’s a summarized version of the story. You can read the complete version here.

What Does Ntel Number Start With?

Ntel doesn’t have numerous subscribers yet, it is safe to say that it has only one code. This means all Ntel sim cards start with the same number at the time of this report. Ntel number starts with 0804******* only.

let’s discuss the brief history of MTN, Glo, 9mobile, and Airtel


MTN is the largest mobile network service provider in Africa with over 280 million subscribers. Formerly known as m-cell, MTN group is a South African telecommunication company that operates effectively in African countries and some other parts of the Asian continent.

MTN’s headquarter is in Johannesburg in South Africa, while one-third of the company’s revenue comes from Nigeria due to a huge number of subscribers in the West African nation. You would love to know that MTN is the world’s 8th largest telecommunication company.

MTN History

MTN was created in 1994 as m-cell with some financial help or assistance from South Africa’s government. 28 years later, the company now operates in over 20 African countries, including Nigeria, Cameroon, Benin Republic, etc.

Best MTN Tariff plan

There are numerous MTN tariff plans available to all subscribers.

These include MTN pulse, MTN mpulse, XtraSpecial Prepaid, XtraSpecial postpaid, MTN Beta Talk, XtraValue, MTN XtraValue Carte, MTN AWUF4U, MTN Yafun Yafun, and MTN TruTalk plan.we believe MTN pulse is best for internet surfers;

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Globacom simply means Glo. It is a telecommunication network that provides mobile network services to many phone users in Nigeria and other parts of the world.

Like MTN, Glo also operates in many countries like Nigeria, Ghana, Benin republic, cote devoir, and the United Kingdom.

Glo was founded and owned by Mike Adenuga – a Nigerian business mogul. Hence is it safe to say that Glo is a Nigerian telecommunication company with over 50 million subscribers and 4000 employees globally.

Glo History

Glo was launched by Mike Adenuga on the 29th of August 2003. It maintained rapid growth to become the second most famous telecommunication network provider in Nigeria behind MTN.

Glo’s head office in Nigeria is the much-discussed Mike Adenuga towers located at 1, Mike Adenuga Close, Off Adeola Odeku Street, Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria. Meanwhile, ensure you read more on Glo’s history and how it attains its current lofty status here.

Glo tariff plans

Glo tariff plans include Glo Jollific8, Glo yakata, Glo 4X, Glo jumbo, Glo twin special bash, 11k/s plan, Glo free tomorrow, Glo flexi recharge, and Glo Bumpa. Every plan has its unique features and benefits. Hence, we advise you read more about each of the plans to know which one is best for you.


Airtel is no doubt one of the most popular networks in Nigeria; it falls into the same category or class with Glo in terms of subscribers. It is believed that Airtel is the second-largest mobile network provider in Nigeria with over 60 million subscribers. It is closely followed by Glo which has lesser users.

Airtel history

Airtel’s history can be traced back to 2011 when it was created as Econet Nigeria. Econet started on the front foot by becoming the first telecommunications service provider to begin GSM services in the West African country

Unfortunately, there was a massive restructuring in the company which led to a change of management and name in 2004. Vodacom took over the company and Econet became Vodacom.

There were subsequent management changes, which led to a corresponding change of names. It moves from Vodacom to Vmobile, Celtel, and Zain until it became Airtel in 2010. Meanwhile, you can click here for more information on Airtel Nigeria’s history

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Airtel Tariff Plan

Smart CONNECT, Smart PREMIER, Smart TRYBE, Smart Talk, Smart Value, Smart Trybe junior, Value plan, and Talkmore bundle are the available Airtel tariff plans. Don’t hesitate to go through the plans before deciding on any one of your choices.


9mobile is the fourth mobile network provider in Nigeria; it also doubles as the network with the least subscribers in the country.

With 9mobile, you can call, browse the internet, and send text messages in Nigeria without experiencing many issues if your phone has sufficient network.

9mobile explores modern-day technology like the 2G, 3G/HSPA+, and 4G LTE as part of the company’s desire to offer quality service to Nigerians and other users.

9mobile Nigeria History

The history of 9mobile in Nigeria can be traced back to 2007 when the Emerging Markets Telecommunication Services Ltd. (EMTS) obtained a Unified Access Service License from the Nigerian Communications Commission.

With the license, the company is eligible to provide Fixed Telephony (wired or wireless), Digital Mobile Services, International Gateway Services, and National/Regional Long Distance Services in Nigeria.

EMTS established a partnership with Etisalat Group —which shares business ties with the UAE government — to start functioning in Nigeria’s telecommunication sector. The partnership and configurations went well, and Etisalat was successfully launched in 2008.

However, there was a financial crisis at some point which forced the Etisalat Group to pull out of the partnership on July 17, 2017. The decision led to a change of administration, board members, and brand name. That was how it became 9mobile to date.

9mobile Tariff Plan

Moretalk, Morecliq, Moreflex, Morelife Complete, Moreflex evolution, Talk Zone, and Cliqlite are 9mobile tariff plans readily available to subscribers.

How Do You Know If A Number Is Glo MTN Or Airtel?

One way to know if a number is MTN, Glo, or airtel number is by checking the prefix code also known as the first four numbers.

MTN numbers start with 081, 0803, 0706, etc. Airtel number numbers start with 0701 or 0702; while Glo starts with 0805 or 0807. Hence, we advise you to check the first four numbers of the number you intend to call to know if it’s MTN, airtel, or other networks.

As much as this method might be deceitful sometimes due to the prefixes’ code similarities, it remains the only way to go about it at the time of this publication.

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