Federal Communications Commission says First U.S. Auction of Toll Free Numbers takes place Today| site |

FCC says "Auction Will Include Over 17,000 Sought-After Numbers in the 833 Code"

(December 17, 2019) - - Today (December 17, 2019), the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) released the following information:

WASHINGTON, December 17, 2019—The FCC’s first-ever auction of toll free numbers will be conducted today. It will include 17,638 numbers in the 833 toll free code for which there have been competing requests. Many of these numbers are easy to remember, such as 833-FLOWERS or 833-333-3333.

The 833 auction will serve as an experiment in using competitive bidding to assign toll free numbers and ensure that sought-after numbers are awarded to the parties that value them most. Currently, most toll free numbers are assigned on a first-come, first-served basis, a system that does not factor in the need for or value of a number. The FCC will use the lessons learned from this first-of-its-kind auction to determine how best in the future to distribute toll free numbers equitably and efficiently.

Forty-four applicants have qualified to bid in the 833 auction, which will be conducted by Somos, Inc., the Toll Free Numbering Administrator. For more information about the auction, visit https://auction.somos.com .

Toll free calling originated in 1967, and toll free numbers remain important to businesses of all sizes, governmental entities, and non-profit organizations for customer service, sales, and marketing. Consumers value the convenience that trusted or easily-memorized toll free numbers can provide.