Area code 917
Area code 917 is a
New York City telephone area code. It is the standard cellular/pager/voicemail phone area code for all of the city's boroughs and is an overlay to 212, 347, 646 and 718. Occasionally, 917 is also assigned to landlines (most commonly in Manhattan, due in large part to the sparse availability of area code 212). Area codes 646 (for Manhattan), 718 and 347 (for Brooklyn, Queens, The Bronx, and Staten Island) are increasingly being assigned to cellular/pager/voicemail numbers as well.
Area code 917 is the first overlay area code in the
North American Numbering Plan. It is also the only "service-specific" area code in the NANP. When it was established, all the cellular phones and pagers which previously had "212" and "718" area codes (for Manhattan and the other four boroughs, respectively) were switched into 917, freeing up the phone numbers for additional landlines. Many voice mail services (which were in their infancy back then) and some special large volume groups such as the Veterans Administration were also kicked into 917.
Shortly after its implementation, the
Federal Communications Commission(FCC) ruled that new area codes cannot be assigned as service-specific, but allowed 917 to remain as such. [cite web|url=http://www.fcc.gov/Bureaus/Common_Carrier/Orders/1999/fcc99243.txt|title=FCC order on overlay area codes. CC Docket 96-98] As a result of a later court order, area code 917 was opened up to all services.
While services are generally portable now between the different carriers, allowing, for example, a "718" landline to switch to a cellular service, decades of entrenchment and inertia generally, but decreasingly so, mean that a 917 number belongs to a cellphone (very few pagers anymore) and that 212 and 718, and the newer 646 and 347, usually refer to landlines.
List of NANP area codes
North American Numbering Plan
* [http://www.nanpa.com/ North American Numbering Plan Administration]
* [http://www.nanpa.com/area_code_maps/display.html?ny NANPA Area Code Map of New York]
* [http://www.whitepages.com/10001/maps/NY Whitepages Area code Map]
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