1GB Of Free Data Per Month At 1MBPS Speed For Every Citizen: Delhi Government’s WiFi Promise
Aam Aadmi Party’s promise of free WiFi in New Delhi reached a new milestone yesterday. As per their newest assurance, every Delhi citizen will get 1 GB of free data per month, at a minimum speed of 1 MBPS. And this time, a fixed timeline for implementation of this scheme was also announced: All colleges and Govt. offices in Delhi would be empowered by Free WiFi within a year.
These announcements were made by Ashish Khetan, vice-chairman of Delhi Dialogue Commission during ‘Wireless Broadband Vision Forum’ at FICCI Federation House’ on Thursday. Ashish said that as part of Phase 1, all colleges and Govt. offices would be covered under free WiFi scheme; under Phase 2, all rural areas (275 villages) around Delhi would be covered; and under Phase 3, all unregulated and unauthorized colonies inside Delhi would be covered.
Emphasizing on the aspect of the quality of service, Ashish said, “One thing that we want to do is that when we announce public wi-fi, the experience of the service should be best. When we announce a policy, it should be on an expected line. It should be on the expectations and aspirations of the people,”
Delhi Dialogue Commission is a special team created by AAP Govt. to execute all poll promises of the party. Within this commission, a special WiFi task force has been formed, whose members include investor and entrepreneur Mahesh Murthy, Nikhil Pahwa and CIS policy director Pranesh Prakash.
It seems that the Govt. will not own any infrastructure for implementing WiFi service across the capital, as tenders would be announced and private firms would be invited to carry on the implementation. The Govt. aims to pay the concerned companies as per the consumption and usage. Hence, an opex (operational expenditure) based model would be used, instead of capex (capital expenditure).
Additionally, Govt. also plans to use the free WiFi service to advertise public interest campaigns and Delhi Govt.’s plans and achievements. Hence, we can expect Govt. sponsored advertisements during the free WiFi usage (pop-up ads, contexual ads and browser inserted ads during surfing)
Previous developments under Free WiFi Promise in Delhi:
- Delhi to get 100% WiFi coverage; 700 WiFi spots to come up in next 24 months (Reported in April, 2015)
- Delhi Free WiFi would be based on usage, not time duration (Reported in May, 2015)
- All Delhi colleges and 300+ villages to get free WiFi (Reported in June, 2015)
- Besides AAP Govt’s promises, a lot has been happening in Delhi related with WiFi connectivity:
- Khan Market, CP and Karol Bagh to get Free Wifi (not under AAP’s program though)
- Delhi Metro to get free WiFi (Delhi Metro’s initiative)
On a National Level:
- Free WiFi to be implemented across 2500 cities; Budget of Rs 7000 crore allocated
- Exhaustive list of all free public WiFi zones in the country