Delhi's ruling Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) plans to launch free Wi-Fi service by February next year. The service will be part of its efforts to build the national capital as a smart city. Free Wi-Fi service was one the key points of election manifesto of the AAP, which won the polls with a massive majority.
According to reports, the government will provide free browsing, access to social media, e-mail service and instant messages such as WhatsApp. However, users will be charged for watching videos, video chats and downloading content. As far speed goes, the minimum Internet speed is likely to be around 512Kbps, while there will be a FUP of 50MB per day. The government hasn't taken a final decision on the matter as yet. “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. The system will be reset daily,” says an official.
Process for the implementation will begin by end of this month as the government will invite expression of interest from stakeholder for the project. Allotment is likely to be finalised by July end. The government has identified about 1000 places for installing Wi-Fi hotspots in the first phase of the project. “This will be a first-of-its-kind project to be tested on such a large scale. In Delhi, there are around two crore wireless devices which can access the internet. If at any point, 25-30 per cent people access internet, it means 50 lakh users. We can also categorise the content being accessed, which has a big scope for targeted advertising,” added the official.
Another important service the AAP government plans to launch is integration of smart card for public transportation across Metro, buses, cabs etc. Under the service, a person will be able to use his/her smartcard for accessing different modes of transport. “Delhi has moved to multi-transport system. We have buses, autos, cabs, metro and the process is to integrate it all together and issue a single card which can be used to access all transport modes. Through this card, one can pay in the metro, bus and even pay for parking and toll taxes,” concluded the official.