The Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) in collaboration with Pune Smart City Development Corporation Limited (PSCDCL), is set to inaugurate 150 free WiFi hotspots across the city on the occasion of Republic Day. Pune residents will now be able to access free internet facility in 199 locations. According to reports from Sakal Times, Google for the first time has tied by with a municipal body like PMC to enable them to set up ‘Google Stations’ that offer free WiFi service.
The citizens will be provided with 50MB data free of cost in hotspot areas at a speed of 512 kbps. Usage above the given limit will be charged with a certain amount for surfing private websites, while usage of government portals will remain free. The users within the network range will have to log-in to the WiFi using a One Time Password (OTP) that will be sent to their registered mobile numbers. This plan is aimed towards the ‘Pune Smart City’ project.
In their statement to the media, PMC said that they wish to reach out to the entire city with their free WiFi connectivity plan and wish to make Pune a digital city by 2020. The locations that are covered in the current plan include public places like hospitals, bus stops, gardens, police stations and government offices.
The current project will require the Smart City Corporation to spend around Rs 110 crore for setting up the infrastructure for the system and an additional of Rs 35 crore towards operational costs. Reports from Pune Mirror state that PMC plans to set up around 400-500 hotspot zones in the coming future. This is a major initiative of the Smart City policy that also includes provisions like emergency call boxes, public announcement systems, environmental and flood sensors.