40 million new users are going to be connected with public wi-fi, Contributing India’s GDP

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Public wi-fi will enable 40 million new connected internet users, with a contribution of USD 20 billion to India’s GDP by 2019 and at least USD 10 billion per annum thereafter, says a new report published by global consultancy and research firm Analysys Mason.

According to the report, around 100 million people would be willing to spend an additional USD 2 to 3 billion per year on handsets and a similar amount on cellular mobile broadband services, as a result of experiencing fast broadband on public Wi-Fi.

“In the last few years, India has made significant progress in driving mobile data usage, thanks to improved networks, and low-cost data. But to really achieve the connected India vision, India will need to further invest in developing public Wi-Fi as a complement to mobile and fiber broadband. Google and RailWire project to deploy high-speed WiFi across 400 stations has shown that there was a technical and operational solution to providing high-quality public Wi-Fi to millions of Indians nationwide, on affordable terms,” said David Abecassis, Partner at Analysys Mason.

“The success of this rollout and Reliance Jio’s 80,000 public Wi-Fi access points as of mid-2017 provide valuable insights in further developing public Wi-Fi as a service that can truly achieve the Digital India vision,” he added.

The report, prepared through the lens of Google and Railtel Public WiFi project, support the Government’s ambition under the draft NDCP to reach 5 million access points in 2020 and 10 million in 2022, to provide an all-pervasive coverage and internet connectivity, for 600 million Indians.

The report also highlights that the investment in public WiFi can further unlock an opportunity for Mobile operators to offload excess data traffic from cellular networks, and deploy advanced technologies such as Hotspot 2.0 for ensuring interoperable roaming between cellular and Wi-Fi.

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