Digital India : Government Is Planning Free WiFi In 2500 Cities [GovTech]

DINaMo’s visionary Digital India campaign has seen many new initiatives being implemented under its umbrella since the day it was introduced. The campaign aims at building India into an economy that would center on internet services to connect the rural and urban India with eGovernance initiatives.
The latest initiative on the campaign is to launch free WiFi services in 2500 cities at speeds that would match 4G connections through government run BSNL. The allocated budget to the project is estimated at INR 7000 Crores.
The free service would be only for a limited period after which the user would have to pay nominal charges for browsing the internet. The service is expected to roll out in the 2015- 2016 fiscal year. The service also aims at upping BSNL’s credibility in the market, which has been suffering huge loses over the years. The service aims at using optical fiber networks to provide connectivity by setting up 50k to 65k WiFi hotspots across cities like Kolkata, Chennai, Lucknow, Dehradun, Hyderabad, Varanasi, Bhopal, Jaipur, Patna, Indore, Chandigarh and Ludhiana etc.
BSNL has not seen much growth due to stiff competition from private players and reducing usage of landline across the country. But with a vast connectivity network and leveraging the landline customer base, BSNL is looking at improving its subscription base with Data connectivity services.
Going with the Digital India campaign, the government had earlier started with National Optical Fiber Network (NOFN) to provide high speed wired network connectivity to 2.5 lakh Indian villages. The first in the service was rolled out in Idukki, Kerala.

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