Just about time when the AAP government is being criticized for not fulfilling its promise of free WiFi in Delhi, it has revealed that the people in Delhi will indeed get free public WiFi in a few short months.
The government will be providing free high-speed internet access to the masses via its public WiFi but will restrict the amount of data that one can use. It is really quite a logical move as restricting internet access based on the time limit would not be a good thing for those who use IMs like WhatsApp all day.
“We will not fix a time but will restrict bandwidth. Internet will be charged on the basis of data usage per day. Once the data limit is exhausted, users can avail the service by paying for extra usage. Every day the system will be reset,” said Adarsh Shastri, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of IT.
Around 150 companies have already expressed interest in this project so far. According to the government officials, the project work will be awarded by the month of July.
Free WiFi In Delhi by February 2016.
The government will be providing free internet access for web browsing including social media networks like Facebook and Twitter, email services, WhatsApp, and other basic services. But the users won’t be able to watch videos, do video chats, and download content off the internet for free.
The users will be able to access the internet at speeds of 512 KBps. We hope that the speed will be 512 kilobytes/sec and not 512 kilobits/sec.
“We will work on ensuring a minimum speed of 512 KB p/s to each user to make it a better experience. We will be very strict on user experience and uninterrupted service,” Adarsh Shastri added.
The free data will most likely be limited to 50 MB per day with the counter set to reset every mid-night. However, the government still hasn’t taken a final decision in this regard.
During the first phase of the implementation the govt. will install hotspots across 1,000 key areas. The plan is to have 50,000-80,000 hotspots covering about 60% of Delhi. Each such hotspot will cover 50 m2 of area.
These hotspots will cover markets, parks, metro stations and high density areas but will not be installed across residential and rural areas, and farms.
How The Government Will Be Benefitted From This Project?
The government is planning to get monetary benefits from this Free WiFi initiative. The officials have studied the public WiFi systems present in Stockholm, Barcelona, Shanghai, and Singapore. As of now, the public WiFi in Shanghai city serves 4.5 lakh people, but the number of public WiFi users in Delhi is estimated to be around 50 lakh users.
“At present, Shanghai has the largest model which caters to 4.5 lakh people. But with 50 lakh users, we have large avenues for monetization. We can also categorise the content being accessed, etc., which provides a big scope for targeted advertising,” explained Adarsh Shastri.
This free WiFi project will definitely take more people online and elevate their lives in a lot of ways.
We will post new developments about this Free WiFi initiative of the Delhi government as soon as more information is revealed. Stay tuned.
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